was in other boat
I was in the second boat of this trip and helped pull the gentleman that survived out of the water and held him while the guide and another person performed CPR on him. He was completely blue and not breathing when we pulled him in the boat. From CPR until they took him out by rail (truck not train), which must have been at least 1 1/2 hours, he made a slow, agonizing but steady, progressive recovery. On our way out of town, we stopped by the hospital to visit him and it was really unbelieveable that we were looking at the same person. While he was still a bit disoriented, he spoke to us and his biggest concern seemed to be that he lost his glasses in the ordeal. He was really a nice guy and thanked us even though he was unsure what had happened and did not recall much of the ordeal.
I can add that he was released from hospital the next day. He called my friend who did chest compressions on him and reported he was doing fine and on his way back to Kansas. Based on what he went through coming back to us, I am in absolute astonishment every time I think about it.
Regarding the gentleman that did not make it, I know less. He was about 1/4 mile down stream from us. I was told that he was not wearing his life jacket when they found him. He was taken out on the same train that we rode out on. Very, very sad and my heart goes out to his family.
He was part of a group of 10 young men from India. None were overweight and did not voice any medical problems when queried by the rafting guide before launching.
There were actually three of the group that floated by us. The 3rd person was rescued and they told us he was ok. But, I do not know more.
Regarding location, I am not that familiar with the Arkansas river. But, we launched above the Royal Gorge bridge. We went through three level 2 rapids. The other boat tipped over in the first set of level 3 rapids. The gentleman we picked up was below the first set of level 4 rapids.
I will conclude the entry with saying it was both a tragic and miraculous experience. I thank God we were able to help the one gentleman. I just wish it could have been two.