Our boating accident lawyers know all too well that at any point in time, things can go terribly wrong when one is boating.
Accidents that involve personal water crafts, including motorboats or jet skis, often lead to serious or fatal injuries. Many of these are the result of someone’s negligence or wrongdoing. Boaters may be operating their vessels while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, may be inexperienced or may simply fail to pay attention to their surroundings or to changing weather in time to avoid injury or even death.
This, unfortunately, is what happened to two friends in Salt Lake City, Utah last week.
Three friends went out duck hunting on the Great Salt Lake Nov. 17 on a flat bottom boat and while heading for shore, the wind started blowing stronger, causing waves to kick up and swamp their small vessel. The boaters were all thrown into the freezing waters. One victim made it to shore and called for help, but by the time rescue crews arrived, it was too late for the other two men.
The victims, Logan Hardman and Chad Tohinaka, both 25 years old, are now being honored by those who loved them. Hardman leaves behind an 11-month-old son named Brody, a 4-year-old daughter named Brynnlee and his wife Natasha, who still cannot believe her husband and his best friend are gone.
“I’m still in shock. It’s still not real to me yet and I’m just devastated, hurt and every other emotion you can imagine,” said Natasha, who is honoring the deceased by remembering the good-hearted people they were.
“[Logan's] an amazing father. He loves his family very much,” said Natasha, adding that he dedicated his life to helping others during his mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to Georgia and Tennessee.
“Chad’s like a brother to me too so it’s not like I just lost my husband, I lost a brother,” she added.
Friends and neighbors also remember Tohinaka as a caring man, often visiting his grandmother to make sure she was always taken care of.
“His family just adored him, especially his grandmother,” said neighbor Allen Canning.
Tohinaka’s sister, Kelsi, also remembers her brother and his best friends and took to Facebook to honor the victims.
“They grew up together and passed together,” said Kelsi. “They were great brothers and I wouldn’t trade a single memory of them.”
In the wake of such a terrible tragedy, it is important for surviving loved ones to know that they are entitled to seek legal assistance. Surviving boating accident victims and their loved ones may be eligible to receive compensation for their pain and suffering from those that might be responsible for causing it. If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident similar to this one, turn to our law firm today to discuss your options and determine if you might have a cause of action.