Suffield man drowns in local lake

By Gregory A. Scibelli - Staff Writer
Suffield - posted Tue., Jun. 21, 2011
A Suffield man drowned in Middle Pond of the Congamond Lakes June 19. Photo by Gregory A. Scibelli.
A Suffield man drowned in Middle Pond of the Congamond Lakes June 19. Photo by Gregory A. Scibelli.

A 22-year-old Suffield man drowned in the Congamond Lakes on June 19.

The Southwick, Mass., Police Department confirmed that on Monday, June 20, the body of a man was recovered from Middle Pond on the Congamond Lakes, a body of water shared by residents of Southwick and Suffield.

“We are not sure whether or not he was pushed or fell in,” said Southwick Police Chief Mark Krynicki, who also serves as the lake’s harbormaster. “That investigation will be undertaken by the Massachusetts Environmental Police.”

Southwick police responded to a call at 12:30 a.m. on June 19.  Police were called to the lakes and learned the 22-year-old male, who several media outlets have identified as Larry Cauley, fell out of the pontoon boat he was aboard.

Krynicki said the man was not wearing a life preserver and proceeded to struggle to tread water. Krynicki also said three individuals wearing life preservers entered the water to attempt to save the man, but were unsuccessful.

As of press time, Cauley’s identity has not been officially confirmed by the police departments, but by several witnesses and Suffield Police Chief Michael Manzi, who said Cauley was the deceased male.

Cauley was known for his appearance on the television show “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” which took place two years ago in Suffield. Cauley was part of the family whose house was the subject of the show.

The Massachusetts State Police and Environmental Police were called in for assistance and began assisting Southwick police at 8:30 a.m. on June 19.

“At a given time, there were between 12 and 15 divers in the water between the three departments,” said Krynicki. “It was a great collaborative effort between the departments.”

The search on June 19 wrapped up around midnight and then resumed the following morning. The recovery of the body was made at approximately 12:40 p.m. on June 20.

Southwick Police Sergeant Richard Cross, who also heads the Southwick Dive Team, said the departments are lucky they were able to find the body so quickly.

“There was 30-feet deep of water and about 6 inches of visibility,” Cross said. “There was also about 4 feet of silt. The lake is pretty murky and the conditions are not very good.”

Krynicki would not comment on the specific circumstances of how the man ended up in the water and said the investigation has been turned over to the state police for further investigation. There is no foul play suspected, and the case is being called a drowning at this time.


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