In the early morning hours of September 1, a 911 call was placed to the LaGrange County Sheriff’s Department. According to a report from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR), six kayakers were lost on the Pigeon River near the Steuben/LaGrange County line.
Indiana Conservation Officers Jake Carlile and Kyle Buchanan were contacted and 911 triangulation allowed the officers to locate the kayakers on foot at approximately 3 a.m. in a heavily wooded area.
The boaters were found without lights and suffering from the early stages of hypothermia as a result of long-term exposure in cold water and falling nighttime temperatures.
One of the kayakers, Raquelle A. Fallis, was led out on foot to a waiting patrol vehicle, while Officer Carlile paddled out with the remaining boaters to the nearest river access.
While waiting for transportation home, another kayaker, Jerry Combs, suffered a minor seizure but refused transport or medical assistance.