July 07, 2014 - 11:55 AM
VERNON - Police are working to give a grieving family answers in the tragic boating death of a Vernon teen.
Officers are investigating the death of Miles Wohlford, 14, who fell off his tube and was struck by the boat and its propeller June 28 on Okanagan Lake.
“The investigation is to thoroughly look into the events that led to the tragic end of the young man’s life, and determine if any charges are to be laid in the case and to provide answers for his family,” RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk says.
Wohlford sustained severe injuries in the accident and his family made the difficult decision to take him off life support July 4. The teen, who was well known in local hockey and lacrosse circles, donated his organs to at least six people before he died.
A 49-year-old Vernon woman believed to be a friend of the family was driving the boat and police will interview her as part of the investigation.
Molendyk says alcohol is not believed to be a factor in the accident, but other criminal offenses could be possible, such as dangerous boating.
The boat will undergo a mechanical inspection to see if there were any malfunctions that caused the accident.
“It’s a horrible, tragic event so we need to make sure we conduct a full, thorough investigation to determined if something did go wrong,” Molendyk says.
There are several ways to help Wohlford’s family. You can donate through the Miracles for Miles fundraiser online, give to the Miracles for Miles VantageOne Credit Union account by cash or cheque, or mail a cheque to Miracles for Miles, c/o Rhonda Becker 1011-34 Avenue, Vernon BC, V1T 6R8.
Silent Auction items can be dropped off at The Okanagan Science Centre in Vernon or mailed to Rhonda Becker at the address above. These will be sold at the July 18 Dance at Elks Hall and August 8 dance at Vernon Lodge.
Until the Bottle Drive/Drop off date is announced sorted recyclables can be taken to either Interior Freight & Bottle or Chasers and put on the Miracles for Miles account.
To contact the reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email email@example.com or call 250-718-2724.
—This story was edited at 10:24 a.m. July 8 to correct the spelling of Miles Wohlford's name in the ninth paragraph.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2014