Mother dies, 6-year-old child missing in river after family fishing trip, officials say

Published: Jun. 11, 2022 at 1:56 PM PDT
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NEWBURYPORT, Mass. (Gray News) - A family outing while fishing at Deer Island turned tragic after a mother died and her 6-year-son went missing in the Merrimack River on Thursday.

The U.S. Coast Guard reports watch standers at Coast Guard Sector Boston received a call at about 7 p.m. reporting six people, two adults and four children, had fallen in the water while fishing on Deer Island.

Officials said two people, a woman and a child, were recovered by a good Samaritan and transferred to emergency medical services for treatment. They were taken to Anna Jacques Hospital.

Three other family members, a man and two children, were recovered by the Amesbury Police Department. They were transferred to emergency medical services for treatment and taken to Seabrook emergency.

However, the Coast Guard said the woman was recovered unresponsive and later died while rescuers could not find the family’s 6-year-old and suspended its search for the boy on Friday at 5 p.m.

“It is always a difficult decision to suspend a search and rescue case, and even more painful when children are involved,” said Coast Guard Sector Boston Capt. Kailie Benson. “Considering the extensive search efforts by the Coast Guard and the numerous state and local agencies, along with on-scene conditions, I have made the decision to suspend the search for the missing 6-year-old boy. Our prayers are with the boy and mother’s family and friends during this time.”

More than a dozen agencies were involved in the search for the child.

The Coast Guard urged anyone with new information on the incident to call Sector Boston at 617-223-3201.

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