Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating a boat accident which occurred on Mississinewa Reservoir in Wabash at about 5:20 p.m. Sunday, July 22.
Mitchell Morris, 22, of Lafontaine, was boating with three other friends when he and two others decided to jump from their boat, which was traveling approximately 40 to 45 mph. The two who jumped with Morris were Chad Bassett, 23, of Wabash, and T.J. Morris Jr., 23, of Lafontaine. The boat was being operated by Aaron Shaw, 22, of Lafontaine.
After the three jumped, Bassett and T.J. Morris quickly surfaced, however, Mitchell Morris did not surface for several seconds. He had sustained a severely lacerated scalp and skull fracture, and a severe lacerated right hand. It is unknown if he was struck by the boat or if he hit debris in the water.
The friends got Morris to the boat, called 911 and took him to the Pearson’s Mill boat ramp. Emergency personnel from the Wabash City Fire Department and Noble Township Fire Department arrived on scene and summoned the Parkview Hospital Samaritan Helicopter to transport Morris.
Morris was flown to the Parkview Regional North Hospital in Fort Wayne where he underwent immediate surgery.
As of 10 a.m. today, Morris was listed in critical but stable condition. Life preservers were not worn by the boat occupants.
Indiana Conservation Officers urge boaters not to take unnecessary risks when boating or enjoying the states waterways. This is a situation where horseplay resulted in the unfortunate serious injury to a boater.
Indiana Conservation Officer Jerry Hoerdt is the lead investigator in this incident and is being assisted by Indiana Conservation Officer Cpl. Erick Bolt. Hoerdt’s report will be submitted to the Wabash County Prosecutors Office for review upon completion.