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A Spotsylvania man dies after daring his friend to jump off of a bridge over Lake Anna.
Date published: 5/5/2012
A Spotsylvania County man died after he dared his friend to jump off a bridge over Lake Anna, then did it himself, authorities said.
Louisa County Sheriff's Detective Mark Stanton said the 55-year-old victim and a 28-year-old man, also from Spotsylvania, had been driving around for about four hours Tuesday when they came to the Moody Town Canal Bridge around 5 p.m.
Stanton said both men had been drinking.
The driver parked the vehicle near the bridge, and the two men walked to the center, not far from two signs announcing that jumping and fishing are prohibited, Stanton said.
"The older male climbed up on the guardrail and challenged the younger male to, 'Come on, let's jump--on the count of three,'" the detective said.
He said the older man counted to three, but neither of them jumped. The second time he counted to three, the older man took the 35-foot plunge, but the younger man stayed on the bridge, Stanton said.
Time passed and the younger man didn't see his friend come up to the surface. He told deputies he later spotted his friend on the other side of the bridge, motionless.
The younger man told deputies he went back to the eastern side of the bridge and climbed down the embankment.
"He waded out into the water waist-deep and pulled his friend to shore," Stanton said. "He saw that his friend wasn't breathing and tried doing CPR."
Rescue personnel arrived within seven minutes after receiving the 911 call. Their attempts to resuscitate the man were unsuccessful, and the man was pronounced dead at 5:27 p.m.
The Medical Examiner's Office in Richmond has not released the man's name or provided an official cause of death, but authorities think he may have suffered a heart attack.
Stanton said friends described the man as a good swimmer. He said there was no sign of external trauma, and foul play is not suspected.
Portsia Smith: 540/374-5419