A woman's body was recovered Monday from the wreckage of a 50-foot power boat that sank after hitting a rock in Long Island Sound, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
The vessel, Priceless, was carrying 10 people on a Sunday afternoon cruise near Fishers Island when it struck the rock, took on water and quickly sank. Nine boaters and a dog were rescued from the water by other boats.
Divers found the body of Mary Patenaude of Pomfret, Conn., inside the cabin of the sunken boat on Monday morning, officials said. The Coast Guard deployed two boats, a helicopter and a fixed-wing aircraft in search of the missing woman.
John Olsen, the command duty officer for the Coast Guard in New Haven, said there is a buoy marking the rock that was hit by the boat near Fishers Island, at the eastern end of Long Island Sound. He said the cause of the accident is under investigation.
Statements from survivors indicate that Patenaude attempted to re-enter the vessel as it was sinking, Old Mystic Fire Chief Ken Richards Jr. told The Day of New London.
Passenger Nick Rauh, 16, told the newspaper that the boat had set out from the Westerly Yacht Club and the group planned to share dinner after the cruise.
"We were trying to go out for a fun outing and then everything just goes wrong," Rauh said.
Pomfret First Selectman Jim Rivers told the Norwich Bulletin that Patenaude, co-owner Pomfret Spirit Shoppe, served on several town boards and commissions. Patenaude's husband, David Patenaude, is the boat's owner and a former Pomfret first selectman.
"She will be greatly missed," Rivers said. "She contributed on so many levels, though her service and her time. She gave when asked and kept giving. It's devastating."
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