Tragedy on the South Santiam!

troutdude
troutdude
How totally sad. Please wear your PFD's when fishing. My heart, and my prayers, go out to his family and friends.

SWEET HOME — Linn County Sheriff Bruce Riley reports that Matthew Ryan Van Brocklin, 15, of Sweet Home drowned Thursday while fishing the South Santiam River.

According to a news release, the Linn County Sheriff's Office received a 9-1-1 call at 5:05 p.m. reporting a fisherman in distress, floating downstream in the South Santiam near the Pleasant Valley Bridge. Dive teams from the Sweet Home Fire Department and the Linn County Sheriff's Office were immediately dispatched to the scene.

Witnesses told deputies that Van Brocklin was fly-fishing with a friend just upstream from the bridge when he waded out into the river and either fell in or tried to swim across. He yelled for help as soon as he went in, but witnesses were too far away. They saw him go underwater. He did not resurface.

The Sweet Home Fire Department recovered Van Brocklin's body a short time later within 25 feet of where he was last seen. He was not wearing a flotation device. The body was taken to Sweet Home Funeral Chapel.

The Linn County Sheriff's Office was assisted by the Sweet Home fire and police departments.
 
S
Steelheader4Life
Man, breaks my heart. When I was 15 I used to go fishing by myself all the time, makes me realize how lucky I am the few times I fell in while wading. Prayers go out to his family and loved ones.
 
B
Billamicasr
As a parent I've always thought it will be best for me to expire before my kids, that should be a rule. It is sad the child is gone; I cannot imagine what the parents are going through. How very saddening.

I'll likely never know, but first thought after the sadness was I bet the kid wasn't much of a swimmer, possibly due to our economy and a lack of places to learn self rescue, floating, treading water, etc. Remember when there were Red Cross classes to learn swimming, first aid and C.P.R.? Not much of that being offered any longer; not many open swimming pools.

I don't know that I've ever seen a bank fisherman with a PFD. However, if you are not a confident swimmer or facing very cold water as troutdude mentioned a PFD would be a nice piece of insurance. For certain if you use waders you need a tight fitting 1.5-2 inch wader belt. If they happen to be neoprene waders so much the better, they have tiny air pockets and add flotation.

Be safe out there.
 
S
sapo
Really sad. And ya wear a wader belt always. I had a scary experience at the Mckenzie last year.
 
C
ChezJfrey
Billamicasr said:
However, if you are not a confident swimmer or facing very cold water as troutdude mentioned a PFD would be a nice piece of insurance. For certain if you use waders you need a tight fitting 1.5-2 inch wader belt. If they happen to be neoprene waders so much the better, they have tiny air pockets and add flotation.

Be safe out there.

I will chime in and say don't use confidence or swimming strength as a gauge in cold water; it doesn't matter when your breath contracts and muscles don't work due to immediate, drastic water chilling. Unless it's summer and the water is above 60, don't count on swimming to save you. Another factor is that water currents are often stronger than you are anyway; you can still get pulled under.
 
S
Stonefish
Very sad news indeed.
SF
 

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