BARRY COUNTY, Mich. -- Three people were hospitalized after a boating accident on Gun Lake on Saturday afternoon.
According to the Barry County Sheriff's Office, at 4:08 p.m. Saturday a 55-year-old Hastings man was operating a 16-foot fiberglass inboard pleasure boat when it collided with a Seadoo personal watercraft.
The 19-year-old Grand Rapids male operating the Seadoo was knocked unconscious and thrown into the water. Seeing this, the Hastings man jumped into the lake, keeping the injured man’s face out of the water.
The injured teenager was wearing a life jacket. However, the Hastings man was not and began to become exhausted. Several Good Samaritan citizens assisted with both the injured teen and the exhausted Hastings man, getting the injured teenager onto a boat and transporting him to shore where he was treated by Orangeville First Responders and Wayland EMS.
The teen was transported to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital in Grand Rapids with head and face injuries.
The Hastings man also was transported by Wayland EMS to Pennock Spectrum due to other health conditions.
Immediately after the collision, the Hastings man’s wife saw her husband in distress and attempted to assist. She was unable to get their boat close. It is unknown at what point the woman went into the water or why she stopped breathing. She was found floating face up in the water, not breathing and not wearing a life jacket.
A Middleville family, who was assisting at the accident scene, found the woman, held her and gave her rescue breaths until Orangeville First Responders could get her into the family’s boat and begin CPR. They took her to shore where other citizens continued CPR until Wayland EMS took over.
The woman was transported from Spectrum Pennock to Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital in Grand Rapids where she is listed in critical condition.
Her husband and the 19-year-old also remain hospitalized in stable condition.
The Barry County Sheriff’s Office and the families of the injured are grateful to the many citizens on Gun Lake who provided assistance. Lives were saved due to their heroic efforts.
The Barry County Sheriff’s Office Marine Division is asking anyone who may have seen the woman enter the water to call the office with information at (269) 948-4801.