The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports

Local News

June 19, 2013

Deputies: Man, 21, drowned in river

A 21-year-old Delhi man apparently drowned Tuesday in the West Branch Delaware River, according to a news release from the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office.

At about noon, several area fire, emergency services and law enforcement agencies responded to the area of Sherwood Bridge in Delhi as a result of a 911 call.

A witness, who was kayaking with the victim, reported that Donald C. Shamus of Delhi had fallen from the top of his capsized kayak and was swept away by the current, the release said. Shamus wasn’t wearing a personal floatation device at the time of the incident, deputies said.

The witness was unable to rescue Shamus and summoned help, according to the release. A search of the river was made by members of the Delaware County Department of Emergency Management, Delhi fire and emergency medical crews and Walton, Margaretville and Downsville fire departments along deputies and members of state Environmental Conservation Police, New York City Department of Environmental Protection Aviation Division, SUNY Delhi University Police and Delhi police.

At about 1:15 p.m., state Environmental Conservation officers located Shamus approximately a half-mile south of the confluence of the West Branch Delaware River and the Little Delaware River, the release said.

Crews started cardiopulmonary resuscitation immediately and continued efforts while Shamus was taken to O’Connor Hospital in Delhi, where he later was declared deceased because of an apparent drowning, the release said.

“That’s really too bad,” said Lewis Gage of Oneonta, great-grandfather of Shamus’s two children.

Gage said his granddaughter and Shamus had been in a relationship but weren’t living together. His granddaughter, Virginia Capps, and Shamus had a son and a daughter, Gage said, and Capps of Oneonta would take the children to visit Shamus on some weekends.

According to birth announcements in The Daily Star, the baby boy was born in 2009 and the girl was born in April.

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