A Massachusetts mother drowned in a New Hampshire river Tuesday while trying to save one of her sons who had fallen in, authorities said.
Melissa Bagley, 44, a wife of Everett Police Lt. Sean Bagley, had accompanied her family of six and a family friend to the Franconia Falls, a popular hiking destination, for a swim.
According to the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department, the family arrived at the Lincoln Woods trailhead around 1 p.m.
One of the Bagley’s young sons slipped and fell into one of the river pools and could not get out of the current’s fast and circulating water.
That’s when Melissa Bagley jumped into the river in an attempt to help her child, according to Sgt. Heidi Murphy with the New Hampshire State Police.
Two other family members also unsuccessfully entered the pools to rescue the 10-year-old, but one of them, an 18-year-old, became trapped in the rocks and current.
Meanwhile, Lt. Bagley was searching for his wife, and eventually found Melissa on a rock. He immediately began to perform CPR, though his wife could not be revived.
Lt. Bagley then had to pull his elder to safety, as the teenager had sustained minor injuries.
Emergency crews arrived in response to the accident and attempted to revive the woman with an automated external defibrillator. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
An autopsy has been scheduled, though police do not believe that drugs or alcohol were factors in the accident.
The Everett Police Department said in a statement, “The Everett Police Department is sad to report the sudden passing of Melissa Bagley 44 yrs of age, wife of Lt Sean Bagley who died during a family outing along the river in the White Mountain area yesterday afternoon. Melissa drowned while trying to aid one of her children who slipped into the river.”
The department added, “While we appreciate all those who have reached out we ask that Lt Bagley and his family be given the time and space to mourn the death of Melissa. Thank you.”
The tragedy serves as a harsh reminder of how dangerous conditions can become at swimming spots, especially during periods of high water.
As authorities continue their investigation, the entire Bagley family’s heartbreak cannot be ignored.
At this devastating time, our thoughts and prayers are with the Bagley family.