Mystery surrounding the death of a kayaker on lake Champlain

Mystère entourant la mort d’un kayakiste sur le lac Champlain

We still do not understand the circumstances surrounding the death of a former professor of physical education 79-year-old who was drafted Friday in the lake Champlain three days after being left alone in a kayak.

“I have not heard that he had health problems, and he would have been able to climb back aboard his kayak if he had fallen because he was in great form,” assumed Jean-François Parenteau. The mayor of the borough of Verdun known to the victim, Laurent Messier, who was his physical education teacher.

Wave of sympathy

The Montreal was going to celebrate his 80th birthday last Wednesday. He had been missing since Monday when he tried to travel to Venise-en-Quebec by kayak. The Sûreté du Québec (SQ) has found his boat drifting on the u.s. side of the lake on Wednesday. His body was recovered from the water at the mouth of the Pike river, at the height of Saint-Armand, stated the SQ.

A wave of sympathy swept through social networks on Friday to the man in his seventies, who taught physical education at école secondaire Monseigneur-Richard, in Verdun, but who was retired for several years.

“He had a goodness that is amazing and he was easy to approach,” said Mr. Parenteau.


The last time he was seen, he was wearing his floatation jacket. According to the SQ, he did not have it on him when he was found.

In a telephone interview, the director general of Société de sauvetage, Raynald Hawkins, has indicated that the kayakers almost always wear their floatation jacket.

“Is that his jacket was too big ? Was it attached ? He had a dizzy spell and he wanted to remove it ? ” inquired Mr. Hawkins to explain why the victim had more on her when she was rescued.

“It looks like it was removed and that may be exactly the reason for his drowning. The floatation jacket […] allows you to stay on the surface in the event of loss of consciousness, and to be clairvoyant to be rescued “, explains the director general of Canoe Kayak Quebec, Marie-Christine Lessard.

The president of the Agency for watershed of the Missisquoi bay, Pierre Leduc, did you know that ” the winds could cause large waves on lake Champlain “. This is the first time that, to his knowledge, that a person dies at that place.

An autopsy will be performed to clarify the circumstances of his death.

– With the QMI Agency

Share Button