OTIS -- The search resumes this morning for a young local man missing and presumed drowned in Otis Reservoir on Sunday.

The man, who authorities didn't identify, was swimming with his father in 30 feet of water off a boat around 2 p.m. when the son had trouble staying afloat, according to Otis fire officials.

The father made it back into the boat, manned by a third person, but the son disappeared into the water. The apparent drowning occurred on the north end of the reservoir, roughly three-quarters of a mile from the former J & D Marina.

Otis Fire Chief Sandy Pinkham says 12 divers from the state police, Pittsfield Fire Department and Berkshire Sheriff's Office, with help from rescue boats provided by several area fire departments and Massachusetts Environmental Police, searched the murky waters to no avail.

"The visibility underwater was terrible," Pinkham said. "The divers had to do everything by feel."

Initially a search and rescue, the fire chief noted the search and recovery was called off for the night shortly after 9 p.m., almost seven hours after the incident occurred.

Fire departments from Sandisfield, Lee, Monterey and Hinsdale assisted Otis rescuers with the search, expected to resume today at 9 a.m.

To reach Dick Lindsay:
rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6233.


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