Father mourns for son who died on river
By Bob Heye and KATU Web Staff
GLADSTONE, Ore. - An 11-year-old boy floating the Clackamas River with members of his Boy Scout Troop drowned Saturday after his canoe capsized near High Rocks Park, authorities said.
The Clackamas County Sheriff's Office identified the boy as Finn Terry of northeast Portland.
According to the sheriff's office, the scouts from Troop 107 were floating in several canoes from Barton Park to Clackamette Park Saturday when the canoe occupied by both the 11-year-old and a man capsized near the Interstate 205 bridge about 5:30 p.m. Both the man and the boy, who were wearing life jackets, were swept downstream in the 43-degree water.
Other boaters, as well as American Medical Response lifeguards on duty in the area, tried to rescue the pair. The man was pulled to safety while the boy went underwater and never surfaced, the sheriff's office said.
"The current was just too strong and swift," one of the lifeguards was quoted as saying.
The boy's body was later recovered in the area.
Authorities speculated that debris in the water or the hydraulics in this section of the river may have contributed to causing the boy's death.
"The water's just way too rough, way too fast, way too cold," said Gladstone Fire Chief John Figini.
Steve Terry, the boy's father, described his son Sunday as "a budding poet, a dreamer, a baseball player, a scout, a dancer, an actor and a sweet, sweet boy."
This was the scene for our family at Civic Stadium. We enjoyed going to our home ballpark to watch the Ems play ball. The loss of the park is tragic.