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Man drowns while trying to cross river in Lakeside

A man drowned in the Lakeside area earlier this month.

Posted: May 12, 2020 11:11 PM
Updated: May 13, 2020 10:42 AM

LAKESIDE, Ore. – A 69-year-old man drowned in the Lakeside area on May 7, the Coos County Sheriff’s Office said.

Marine deputies searched the area around Dunes Mobile Ranch and initially could not find the elderly man idenitified as Larry Ray Gabbard. The United States Coast Guard deployed a helicopter to help with search. Bandon Rural Fire District also sent a dive team. 

Gabbard's body was located near where he was last seen. The investigation found that Gabbard and his friends were improving a fishing area nearby. Gabbard attempted to cross the river by tying a rope to his belt but the current was too strong and he was swept away. 

As a reminder, the Coos County Sherrif's Office said even though the weather may be warmer, the water is still colder and hypothermia is a risk. Flotation devices should be used during water activities. 

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