NH Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief photo.

Massachusetts mom drowns trying to rescue son from powerful, circulating current


“At 4:00 PM on Tuesday, August 15, 2023 the NH Fish and Game Department was notified of a hiker that required assistance near Franconia Falls in Lincoln.

An SOS text came in through 911 stating a person was trapped and there were multiple people involved. Several minutes later another text was received indicating a possible drowning. Unable to confirm the events due to a lack of cell phone coverage at Franconia Falls and the Lincoln Woods trailhead,

NHFG requested Lincoln Fire Department respond with a UTV. Conservation Officers were also requested to respond with their ATVs. As rescue crews were making their way the 3.5 miles into the Franconia Falls, another hiker was running out to the Lincoln Woods trailhead to find help.

NH Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief photo.

That hiker was able to provide more information to rescue personnel about the incident and the victims’ location. Once rescue crews arrived at Franconia Falls they were able to locate two people that sustained non-life threatening injuries and one person that was deceased. Two of the victims were brought out to the trailhead and transported to Littleton Regional Healthcare for further evaluation and treatment by Linwood Ambulance.

The deceased person was transported to the trailhead and picked up by Mayhew Funeral Home. Conservation Officers and the Lincoln Fire Department were assisted in the rescue efforts by the Lincoln Police Department and the NH DOS Marine Patrol.

Through interviews it was learned that a Massachusetts family of five and a friend arrived at the Lincoln Woods trailhead at approximately 1:00 pm. They planned to hike to Franconia Falls. Once they arrived at the falls they began to get ready to swim.

One of the minor children slipped and fell into one of the pools at the falls. He could not get out of the pool as it was a fast, circulating current. The mother jumped into the river to help her child and began to immediately have trouble. Two other children jumped into the river to help their brother and mother.

They were able to get their brother out of the water, but in doing so, another brother became lodged in the boulders and could not escape. The father was trying to find the mother. He eventually found her on a rock and immediately began CPR.

Unfortunately she was unable to be revived. The father made it over to his son’s location and was able to pull him to safety. He went back to his wife’s location and waited for personnel to arrive.

Names of the victims are being withheld. No further information is available at this time.”-NH Fish and Game Law Enforcement Division and Operation Game Thief.

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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