Rescuers seek boater missing in Rhode River

July 07, 1991|By Adam Sachs

State Natural Resources Police searched the Rhode River in south Anne Arundel County last night for a New Carrollton man missing and presumed drowned after the motor boat he was aboard struck a large wake yesterday afternoon, throwing all eight passengers overboard, a police spokesman said.

Michael W. Caldwell Sr., 29, had rescued one of his children from the river, then dived in again and disappeared in the 12-to-15-foot deep water, about 250 yards off-shore, said Cpl. Ralph Parker, spokesman for the Natural Resources Police.

"We don't know why he went back out," Mr. Parker said.

Natural Resources Police and divers from the Anne Arundel County Fire Department searched until dark last night and would resume their search this morning.

The wake forced the bow of the 17-foot open vessel under water, sinking the boat and tossing its passengers into the river about 3:50 p.m. yesterday, Mr. Parker said.

Boaters in the vicinity picked up the other passengers, including Mr. Caldwell's wife, Judy; his sister, Linda Hough of Landover; and two of the Caldwell children, Michael Jr., 11, and Julie, whose age was not available, Mr. Parker said.

Other passengers were William S. Fuoco, 40, of Greenbelt; Nicole Fuoco, 11, of Lanham; and Charles E. Hardin, 15, of Landover. None of the passengers on the boat, owned by Mr. Caldwell and Josue D. Abarza of New Carrollton, wore a life jacket.

Ms. Hough was flown to Prince George's General Hospital Shock Trauma unit with cuts on her legs, apparently from the boat's propeller, Mr. Parker said.

He said neither alcohol nor excessive speed were factors in the accident.

The drowning was the second in Maryland in the last weekFour-year-old Edward Anthony Fleming drowned Wednesday in the Chester River after falling overboard from a boat.

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