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Man trying to save beagle from Pemigewasset River drowned; dog made it to shore



Monitor staff
Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Authorities recovered the body of a missing boater who jumped into the Pemigewasset River in New Hampton on Sunday to rescue one of his dogs.

The body of Jacques Savoie, 54, of Hudson was retrieved by divers from the Fish and Game Department about 8:45 a.m. Monday, according to members of the Marine Patrol. Savoie’s body was found in about 10 feet of water near where he was last seen by his wife.

State police and New Hampton Fire/Rescue were alerted to the incident about 6:35 p.m. Sunday. Savoie was operating a 14-foot aluminum motorboat with his wife, Debbie, and four beagles when one of the dogs jumped into the water.

After unsuccessfully trying to help the dog from the boat, Savoie went into the water to help his pet back to safety. Once in the water, he started to struggle. Life jackets were thrown to him, but he wasn’t able to reach them, police said.

Savoie was last seen with the dog on his chest before going below the surface.

Passing kayakers helped the man’s wife navigate to shore, and the beagle that had jumped in the water was also retrieved.

The New Hampton Fire Department oversaw search efforts until Fish and Game officials arrived.

Savoie’s cause of death was ruled a drowning.

(Elodie Reed can be reached at 369-3306, ereed@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @elodie_reed.)