SUDBURY (CBS) — A young boy has died days after he was found unresponsive during a water rescue in the waters off Wareham.
“It is with sadness and a heavy heart that I share with you the untimely death of Harry O’Connor, third-grader at Nixon Elementary. Harry and his family were involved in a boating accident earlier this week,” wrote Sudbury’s Superintendent Anne Wilson.
On Wednesday afternoon, Harry, along with eight other children and three adults, was in a power boat when it capsized near Hog Island Channel.
Martin Van Breems and his crew on the Disco Volante were on their way from Norwalk, Connecticut to Portland, Maine, going through the Cape Cod Canal, when they noticed the overturned boat.
They were able to recuse nine people from the water. At that time, Van Breems said the eight-year-old boy was still unaccounted for.
According to Van Breems, the boy’s parents stayed in the water next to the boat. “They kept screaming out ‘There’s a kid under the boat, kid under the boat’,” he said.
Professional diver Mike Margulis was the first person to get to the boy after he heard the distress call and jumped into action.
“I was reaching and searching through debris. I wasn’t sure what I was looking for and I saw the life jacket,” said Margulis. “I was able to pull through an overturned hull and get a young adult from underneath a bow section.”
The Coast Guard responded with a 45-foot boat crew and MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter to take over the rescue.
Officials said the boy was first taken to Tobey Hospital and then airlifted to a Boston hospital.
“Nothing compares to the grief and sadness of losing a child. While the family is the most impacted, many others share in the profound sadness of this tragic event,” Wilson’s statement continued. “Adults and children may each experience the news of Harry’s death in very different ways. We will have counselors available between 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. tomorrow (Monday 7/31) at both Nixon Elementary and Curtis Middle School.”
Wilson also said she expects the service to be at the Our Lady of Fatima Church before family members return to Ireland.