Duck hunters rescued from Westport River, 2 dead after boat caps - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

Duck hunters rescued from Westport River, 2 dead after boat capsizes

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By Dana Griffin & Mike LaCrosse

Dgriffin@abc6.com, mlacrosse@abc6.com

Westport, MA- A white skiff that carried three men Tuesday morning into the Westport River for duck hunting, capsized. It was spotted overturned shortly before 8 a.m.

"We stumbled across a camouflage hunters glove and that was enough to make me think that we had a problem," said Westport Harbormaster Richard Earle.

The Coast Guard found 53-year-old Steven James of Marshfield, and 55-year-old Robert Becher of Cromwell, Connecticut a half a mile from their boat, around 10:30. The men were later pronounced dead.

51-year-old Gregg Angell of Westport, was found alive shortly after 11, suffering from hypothermia.  He was airlifted to Rhode Island Hospital.

"Dr. Angell is a pretty avid hunter and fisherman and he's pretty you know ... knows the woods well and this is pretty freak accident for somebody like him that's been on the water as much as he has," said Dr. Kerry Gowell, co-worker.

"We're just really happy that he is doing better and he's gonna be with us," said Dr. Gowell.

"It's tragic. It's a mistake. Fishing, hunting in this kind of weather is very, very dangerous," said commercial fisherman, Everett Mills.

Although it's the coldest day of the year, Mills explains why the men may have chosen to go out in the water today.

Mills says, "The harshest weather [is] often the better duck hunting days, especially when it's windy."

He says the wind helps push the ducks around making it harder for them to hide, and easier for hunters to shoot.

This morning, the water temperature in the Westport River was 35 degrees, air temperature about eight degrees, and wind at 30-knots.

The boat was later pulled out of the water by rescue crews.

The Bristol County District Attorney's office is investigating. They say it does not appear to be suspicious.

Angell is expected to survive.

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