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Fisherman Drowns When Boat Hits a Dam

July 06, 1999|Associated Press

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A man on a nighttime fishing outing with his son and brother died after their small boat ran into a dam on the Arkansas River.

George Freas, 52, and his son Matthew, 16, were sucked through the dam's gates Saturday night. They emerged safely on the other side, but George Freas lost consciousness and drowned while he and his son floated down the river for half a mile.

Matthew was rescued early Sunday, as was his uncle, Keith Freas, 61, who clung to a log against the dam for five hours.

The three had been in a 14-foot boat when the engine stalled and a swift current carried them into Murray Lock and Dam. None was wearing a life jacket.

Keith Freas was treated in a hospital and released. Matthew was in fair condition.

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