Man from Boulder dies after falling off paddle board in Chaffee County

BUENA VISTA – A 40-year-old man’s body was located Saturday night as the result of a paddle boating accident.

According to Chaffee County Sheriff’s Office, Michael Robert James of Boulder was paddle boating at the Buena Vista River Park when he fell into the water.

According to witnesses, James wasn’t able to get back on the paddle boat. Multiple boaters attempted to rescue James, but he was swept away because of the high and fast moving water.

After he was swept away, another boater saw and attempted to help James before he was swept away again.

The boater followed James to the River Runners area, according to the sheriff’s office, and emergency crews and private citizens pulled James out of the water. He was pronounced dead at 5:50 p.m. Saturday.

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