Man dies after falling from pontoon, being swept under boat

Friends believe he struck the motor while under the boat.
Publish date:

A man died in a lake near a northern Minnesota resort after falling from a pontoon and being swept under the craft.

The body of Nathen Waldo, 34, of North Branch, was pulled from 30 feet of water on Big Sandy Lake Saturday afternoon, after he'd fallen from the boat at around 11:40 p.m. Friday near the Hillcrest Resort.

He was with a group of male friends on a Misty Harbor pontoon boat, with his friends telling Aitkin County deputies that Waldo had fallen off the front of the boat as it was moving forward.

"Witnesses said that Waldo was swept underneath the boat as it continued forward and believed that Waldo was struck by the motor," the Aitkin County Sheriff's Office said in a news release.

An extensive night-time search was launched, including a search of the shoreline, but attempts to find him were initially unsuccessful.

The St. Louis County Search & Rescue team joined the search Saturday.

The driver of the boat, a 34-year-old man from Maplewood, has been arrested on charges of boating while intoxicated. The local county attorney is reviewing the case for possible charges for criminal vehicular operation.

Sign up: Subscribe to our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

Next Up


Child dies, driver critically injured in crash on I-90 in Faribault County

The crash happened at approximately 11:24 p.m. Tuesday.

coronavirus, COVID-19 test

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Tuesday, July 27

The newest data from the Minnesota Department of Health.

Cold Spring

Charges: Family terrorized by alleged racist stalker who drove truck into their home

The victims say they had been targeted and stalked for 83 days prior to the incident.

Ricky Eloy Ramirez

Charges: TX man was acting paranoid before he shot man in MN hotel

He's accused of shooting the victim six times, killing him.

Meeker County Sheriff's Office

Suspect flees deputies on scooter, pickup truck before being Tasered

He was eventually tased while in a third vehicle, and arrested.

bonfire burning restrictions fire

7 counties added to Minnesota DNR's campfire burning ban

This comes amid the ongoing drought that's impacting the entire state.

storm damage

Storm damage in northern MN; severe weather threat through Wednesday

Storms could pack a punch again Tuesday and especially Wednesday.

oscar ortiz = moorhead manhunt

Moorhead police searching for 'armed and dangerous' murder suspect

The Moorhead PD is asking property owners to check their surveillance equipment for the suspect.



Maplewood man charged with DWI after 'guys weekend' ends in tragedy

The 32-year-old was drunk-driving a pontoon, with one of his friends falling off and dying.

Polaris to buy America's biggest pontoon maker for $805M

Boat Holdings is the owner of brands including Bennington and Hurricane.

boundary waters

Man dies after falling off boat in Boundary Waters

The incident occurred on Trout Lake on Memorial Day.

Conservation officer dies after being thrown from boat

He was responding to a call of a possible body floating in the water.

lake water

Elk River man drowns after falling from boat west of the Twin Cities

The man fell from the boat around 3:20 p.m. Tuesday, according to the sheriff's office.

Brainerd man drowns trying to swim after his drifting boat

His boat drifted as he tried to launch it from Gilbert Lake.