UPDATE: The Barry County Sheriff’s Office has identified the victim in the boating accident Sunday as Cameron Cichosz, 20, of Howell. The driver of the boat was Michael G. Butzke, 21, of Allegan. Butzke was lodged at the Barry County Correctional Facility as a result of this incident, officials said.
The doctors who assisted the victim are Dr. Lauren Azevedo, an employee of St. John Hospital of Detroit, and her husband Dr. Ryan Keating of Henry Ford Hospital of Detroit.
Both were visiting family at Gun Lake and on a pontoon boat when they heard the calls for help and swam to the aid of the injured person, who by then was back on board the boat from which he had fallen.
The Barry County Sheriff’s Office, Orangeville Fire Department and Michigan State Police responded to a boating accident on east Gun Lake Sunday at 5:17 p.m., according to a sheriff’s news release.
The report said when a 20-year-old man from Howell went off the side of an inboard boat during a turn, the stern of the boat swung over him and the propeller amputated his leg.
Fortunately, two doctors from St. Johns Hospital and Henry Ford Hospital of Detroit were visiting family, saw the need for medical assistance and quickly swam to help.
They applied a tourniquet to slow the femoral bleeding, likely saving the victim’s life, officials said.
Orangeville Medical First Responders and other medical personnel visiting the lake also assisted in getting the victim to shore. He was transported to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital by Wayland EMS in unknown condition. The accident is currently under investigation by the Marine Division of Barry County Sheriff’s Office, with updates to follow.
Alcohol is a contributing factor, officials said.
Orangeville and Martin Township fire departments, Wayland EMS, Michigan State Police and Barry County Central Dispatch assisted the sheriff’s office.