Somerville Man Revived After Near Drowning in Megansett Harbor

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By: Brent Runyon
Published: 05/21/13

A 69-year-old man from Somerville was pulled out of Megansett Harbor in North Falmouth on Sunday morning by a Falmouth doctor and a Falmouth judge who happened to be in the area.

Dr. Grover G. Baxley left his home in North Falmouth early Sunday morning to go fishing when he saw a man in the water struggling to keep another man’s head above water. He pulled up alongside the men and was able to pull them aboard his boat with the help of Judge Donald L. Carpenter, who arrived a few minutes later in a separate boat.

Dr. Baxley then started CPR to keep the man alive. “It was one heck of a house call by Dr. Grover Baxley,” said Judge Carpenter. “He quarterbacked the whole operation.”

Judge Carpenter called 911 at 6:45 AM and Falmouth Police, Department of Natural Resources, and Fire Rescue Departments were dispatched.

“He was unresponsive at that point,” Judge Carpenter said. “His color was very bad.”

Dr. Baxley kept the man alive while they waited for rescuers to arrive. “The guy was very lucky to have Dr. Baxley,” Judge Carpenter said. “He’s my hero.”

The 69-year-old was the father-in-law of the younger man, and they were each in a small inflatable raft, Judge Carpenter said. The younger man said he did not know what happened, but looked over and saw his father-in-law was in the water.

A Falmouth Hospital spokesman would not comment on the man’s condition. Due to privacy laws, he would not release the man’s name.

“The matter is still under investigation,” said spokesman Reginald Zimmerman of the Massachusetts Environmental Police, which is handling the matter because it occurred off-shore. The men were not wearing life jackets, he said. The man’s name will not be released until there is a change in his condition, Mr. Zimmerman said.

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