The Maine Warden Service reports a 75-year-old man drowned Tuesday afternoon after the boat he was in overturned on a remote pond in Downeast Maine.

Wardens say Lindon Rockwell of Perry was tending bait fish traps on East Pike Brook Pond at around 1:20 p.m. when he leaned over to check one of his traps. The 12-foot aluminum boat capsized, throwing him into the water.

Two of Rockwell’s friends were on shore and immediately called 911 when they saw the boat overturn. Wardens say the friends were over 350 yards away and without another boat they were unable to get to Rockwell. They encouraged him to swim to shore but Rockwell was not wearing a life jacket and drowned in the pond.

Fire/Rescue Departments from Epping and Deblois were the first on the scene. Members of the Maine Warden Service, Maine Marine Patrol and the Maine Forest Service also responded. East Pike Brook Pond is north of Cherryfield in Washington County.

One firefighter wearing a survival suit was able to swim to the overturned boat and recovered the body at around 2:30 p.m.

Wardens say a life jacket was found floating in the water near the boat and another one was stuffed under the bow of the boat.

“Inland waters are still extremely cold this time of year and hypothermia can set in quickly,” said Game Warden Joe McBrine. “Wearing a life jacket can save your life if you find yourself in the water unexpectedly.”

Rockwell was transported by Cherryfield Ambulance Service to McClure Funeral Home in Machias.

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