2012-06-21 / Front Page

Drowning victim identified

Jill Ballinger/GAZETTE EDITOR

 A Southern California man trying to save his young daughter has been identified as the victim of Friday afternoon's drowning in the Merced River.

On June 22, at about 4:13 p.m. the Mariposa County Sheriff's Office Emergency Dispatch Center received an emergency call of a 14-year-old girl floating down the Merced River in distress and drowning.

The girl's father, Alfredo Damas, 45, of Alhambra, entered the river to rescue her. Damas then also became distressed.  Others present at the river assisted the girl to safety, however, Damas slipped under and out of sight.

A Bureau of Land Management  ranger near the area was notified and subsequently found Damas about six feet underwater.  The ranger swam across river and pulled Damas out of the river and initiated CPR.  

Sheriff's deputies, fire rescue and medical responded to the Briceburg area.  A deputy swam across the river to assist with CPR rescue attempts while other deputies and rescue responders arrived and helped transport Damas across the river to roadside, on a rescue board.  

All attempts to revive Mr. Damas were unsuccessful and he appeared to have died from drowning. 

 

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