A Maine town manager died rescuing his son after they both fell through the ice

A Maine town manager died Friday after rescuing his 4-year-old son from a frozen lake they both fell into while walking, officials said.

The manager, Kevin Howell, 51, of Carmel, was with his son when both fell through the ice while crossing Etna Pond, the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office said. Facebook.

Mr. Howell pulled his son out of the water onto the ice and told the boy to take his mother.

The boy ran home, about one-third of a mile from the pond, and his mother called 911. She told the boy to stay home while she raced to the pond. She grabbed an anchor and rope and ran to the pond, the sheriff’s office said.

When the woman, whose name has not been released, reached the water, she attached a rope to the shore, but ended up breaking through the ice, officials said.

Sheriff’s Detective Jordan Norton arrived after hearing the 911 call.

“Seeing the woman in the water, he began crawling on the treacherous ice, holding on to the rope, and was able to pull the mother out” and pull her to shore, the sheriff’s office said.

However, he could find no trace of Mr. Howell. Six divers from the Maine Warden Service and one state police diver were called. The two dived at about 1.40pm and found Mr Howell’s body about 20 minutes later. It was not clear at the time how thick the ice was.

City officials were not immediately available for comment Sunday.

As manager of Carmel, a town of less than 3,000 people located 10 miles west of Bangor, Mr. Howell was responsible for overseeing and managing local government departments.

He was recognized in 2018 for his work to improve the city’s recycling program and was honored with the 2020 Maine Town, City and County Management Association’s annual Leadership Award, which is given to public administrators who lead innovative projects or solve tough problems in their roles.

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