George Lee

George was an electrician who lived and worked in Kenora, Ontario for many years. He was born in the Lake of the Woods country, but never learned how to swim.

One day he allowed himself to be talked into a boat ride to a cabin on the lake, in order to fix an electrical problem. The property owner picked George up at the main dock in an old home made flat bottomed boat. George was not impressed with the boat but he felt committed to the job so jumped in.

It was only a few miles to the cabin on an Island and the weather was good when they left town. Once out on the open lake the waves were much higher and the boat trip became a lot rougher. George sat near the front of the boat hugging his tool box.

Within sight of the beach the boat suddenly nose dived into a large wave, filled with water and instantly sank. George lost his tool box but managed to grab the outboard motor fuel tank that was half empty and floating.

The owner of the boat, who was a good swimmer, swam for shore. Once on the beach he ran down the shore line where a family was picnicking with their boat dragged up on the beach.

Without asking permission he jumped into the boat , started the motor and raced back to save the electrician who was having trouble keeping his head above water.

George was saved, and later in the day a diver recovered the boat and the tool box. When the boat was on the beach it was discovered that the old boat had been constructed with iron screws which were badly rusted. The last big wave had caused the bow of the boat to spring open so that it rapidly filled with a torrent of water.

George continued working as an electrician, but stayed on the mainland.