Helicopter rescues 90-year-old fisherman from the bottom of northern Ontario rapids
SUDBURY -- It is a fishing experience a 90-year-old man from Waterloo will likely never forget.
Provincial police were contacted at 9:30 p.m. Wednesday after the senior didn't return from fishing on Thistle Lake in Field, Ont.
The man left his rental cottage at 11:30 a.m. and was finally rescued around 5:35 a.m. the next morning.
OPP marine and aviation services were deployed and were able to find the man wearing a life jacket in his boat at the bottom of the rapids about 12:30 a.m.
However, because of the extremely rough terrain and remote location, neither of the OPP units could get close enough to him to make the rescue, so the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre out of the Canadian Forces Base Trenton was brought in to help.
The Royal Canadian Air Force's 424 Transport and Rescue Squadron, nicknamed "Tiger Squadron" responded with a Griffon helicopter to perform the evacuation.
Five hours later, the fisherman was rescued and found in good health but was taken to hospital as a precaution.
Police said that the man was fishing near the rapids when the boat's engine shut off and did not restart. His boat drifted and went down an eight-foot drop to the bottom of the rapids. He tried to paddle up closer to the rapids unsuccessfully, so he stayed where he was and waited for help.