Rappahannock Rescue Ends Well after Stormy Dip
(NEWPORT NEWS, VA.) — The Virginia Marine Police report they rescued Sean O’Brien, 42, of Glenn Allen, Va., a boating accident victim, at approximately 10:00 am from the Rappahannock River, near Garrett’s Marina, in Bowlers Wharf, Va. Timmy Tate, 45, of Ashland, Virginia was also in the boat.
O’Brien and Tate left Garrett’s Marina at 6:15 am, April 21, 2015. The 14 foot John boat O’Brien and Tate were fishing in was anchored approximately one-half mile from the marina. The weather quickly started deteriorating. Both men put on lifejackets and began to attempt to pull up the boat anchor. The boat started taking on water and Tate cut the anchor line.
O’Brien then tried to start the boat engine unsuccessfully. Within less than two minutes the boat capsized and started floating down river.
Tate swam for one and one-half hours to the shore. Tate ran up the lawn to Reuben Melton’s house and told him to call 911 as there had been a boating accident and his friend was still in the water.
At approximately 9:00 am Virginia Marine Police Officer Jamie Hogge happened to be in the Essex County Sheriff’s office collecting information on an earlier incident regarding the Saint Margaret School’s crewing team, when the distress call came in about the boating accident. Officer Hogge immediately called the Marine Police Dispatch Center advising them of the incident. The Dispatch Center sent out an alert to all boats in the area.
The Marine Police Dispatch office contacted the Marine Police aircraft, which was also in the area. The aircraft pilot spotted the victim, two miles downriver from where the boat capsized.
The pilot hovered over the victim until the Marine Police boat could reach him. O’Brien had been in the water for three hours. He was pulled aboard the boat suffering from exhaustion and shivering from the cold water.
The Essex County Emergency Medical Service Team met the Marine Police at a dock at residence, off of Sheep Side Drive, not far from where the victim was found in the water.
O’Brien was then taken to Garrett’s Marina where the EMS unit was standing by with an ambulance to transport Mr. O’Brien to Riverside Hospital in Tappahannock, Va.
O’Brien was treated at Riverside and sent home.