Columbia Falls Man Dies in Flathead River

Michael Allen, 79, died Nov. 6 when a boat capsized near Presentine fishing access

By Tristan Scott

A 79-year-old Columbia Falls man died Tuesday when an aluminum boat capsized around noon on the Flathead River north of the Presentine Bar fishing access, according to Sheriff Chuck Curry.

The victim, Michael Allen, was riding in the boat with another occupant when it capsized, sending them both in to the river. Deputies from the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office, Flathead Search and Rescue, Evergreen Fire, Two Bear Air Rescue, and ALERT were dispatched.

The boat and the two individuals were located by the Two Bear Air helicopter about two-thirds of a mile north of the fishing access, and dropped off a paramedic.

While one of the boat’s occupants managed to swim to shore, Allen remained in the water. Medical personnel attempted to revive him but were unsuccessful. The other person was hypothermic but otherwise uninjured.

The cause of the accident remains under investigation, Curry said.


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