Two critically injured boaters were fighting for their lives Sunday, but three others in a group’s overturned small boat in the waters off Catalina Island were dead.
Two others in the capsized craft may have sustained some injuries, but they were not in critical condition.
The Coroner’s Office identified the three men killed as Young Joon Park, 64, and Kyung Hwam Kim, 47, both of Los Angeles, and Jason Jung Noh, 62, of Buena Park, said Capt. John Kades of the coroner’s office.
Some media reports indicated the victims were of Korean descent and the people in the crowded boat may have been out for a day of fishing.
But what may have been a day of fun turned to deadly tragedy when the seven people — all described only as males — were thrown into the water when 4-to-6 foot waves capsized their small boat, authorities said. Some reports indicated the boat was 15 feet, other reports said it was 22 feet.
Two of the injured were in critical condition. The identities of the survivors were not available.
Firefighters and paramedics were dispatched to the location at 9:32 a.m. Saturday, according to a county fire department dispatcher.
A witness reported that the skiff with seven people on board had overturned near Salta Verde Point on the backside of the island, Sondra-Kay Kneen of the U.S. Coast Guard said. Waves in the area were reported to be between four and six feet.
A good Samaritan rescued two people from the water and reported seeing another person on the rocks. A Coast Guard helicopter crew rescued the person from the rocks, Kneen said.
Baywatch Isthmus and Baywatch Avalon recovered three bodies from the water, and a Catalina Island Conservancy officer located the seventh person on the beach, she said.
The three fatalities died at the scene.
The Coast Guard transported one person to Long Beach Memorial Medical Center and Los Angeles County Fire Department paramedics took the other three people to area hospitals, Kneen said.
–Staff and wire reports
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