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Authorities say 2 rescued, 1 dead, 1 missing after boat capsizes on Lake Erie

CLEVELAND — Authorities have suspended the search for a missing boater in Lake Erie after rescuing two others and pulling another person from the water who later died.

The U.S. Coast Guard Great Lakes station said a distress call was received just after 10:30 a.m. Saturday, which authorities said directed them to an area off a Painesville communications tower. A helicopter was launched from the Coast Guard air station in Detroit and a boat crew from the Cleveland harbor headed out to search, but an hour later the helicopter was diverted to a separate rescue in the lake off Ashtabula.

Shortly before 2 p.m. Saturday, a local fire rescue boat crew reported finding coolers and other debris floating in the water off the Perry nuclear power plant. Divers with the Lake County dive team also found a capsized and partially submerged 23-foot vessel.

The Detroit crew, after refueling, rejoined the search and rescued one person in the water while the fire department boat crew rescued another person. The two, a man and a woman, were wearing life jackets. The Cleveland harbor crew rescued another man, who was unresponsive and was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.

After the three rescues, officials learned that a third man had been in the water. Officials said it wasn’t immediately clear whether that person had been wearing a life jacket. Another helicopter and a boat crew kept searching but the effort was suspended Saturday night after 10 hours, officials said.

The Detroit helicopter crew diverted earlier had rescued five people in the water who were clinging to a cooler in Lake Erie waters about 10 miles (16 kilometers) off Ashtabula after their 22-foot boat had been swamped by a wave, officials said. The five were taken to the northeast Ohio regional airport, and officials said none had any medical concerns.

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