Teenager injured in Kezar Lake boating accident

By Lisa Williams Ackley

Staff Writer

LOVELL  — A 15-year-old girl from Texas, whose leg was severed above the ankle in a boating accident on Kezar Lake Tuesday afternoon, was airlifted to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

The teenage girl was sitting in the bow of a powerboat, operated by her father, that was towing a 13-year-old boy on a tube when the accident happened, according to Corporal John MacDonald of the Maine Warden Service.

"At about 2:45 this afternoon, a boat crash occurred that injured at least two people," Cpl. MacDonald said, in a phone interview with The Bridgton News July 10. "A 15-year-old girl was ejected (from the boat) and the boat drove over her and severed her leg above the ankle. The operator of the boat was the girl's father."

Cpl. MacDonald said in a statement issued later on Tuesday that a "family-owned" 24-foot Correct Craft inboard fiberglass motorboat was carrying six family members when it crashed near a small island on the east side of Kezar Lake.

"Involved in the crash was a 13-year-old boy being towed on a tube, a 10-year-old boy in the rear of the boat, three teenage girls sitting in the bow (one who is 13 and two 15-year-olds), and an adult driver," MacDonald stated. "Driving the boat was 44-year-old Robert Mueller from Houston, Texas. Mueller was towing the boy when he struck a submerged rock barely visible from the surface. Upon impact, all three female passengers in the bow were ejected including Mueller's 15-year-old daughter Abby. The boat ran over Abby, severing her leg with the running propeller. Her leg became severed between her ankle and knee. Robert Mueller also received minor injuries during the impact when he was thrown toward the windshield. The girl was flown by LifeFlight to Massachusetts General Hospital. The boat sustained damage and took on water as it was driven to shore. The drive shaft guide bracket was damaged and allowed water to enter the hull."

MacDonald said the northwest side of the island is marked with five hazard buoys and the boat struck a rock inside the marked hazard area.

"It is not believed alcohol was involved," MacDonald stated.

The 10-year-old boy and 13-year-old girl are Mueller's son and daughter, according to MacDonald, and the 13-year-old boy on the tube and the other 15-year-old girl are brother and sister. They are cousins to those injured, he said, and are from Woodstock, Connecticut.

"They were all staying at a family cabin on the lake," said MacDonald.

The victims came ashore at the docks at the Quisisana Resort on Pleasant Point, according to Lovell Fire Chief Tommie McKenzie, and the teenage victim was transported by ambulance to a nearby landing zone and placed on the awaiting medivac helicopter.

Game Warden Sergeant Dave Chabot and Wardens Neal Wykes and Kris Barboza investigated the boat crash. MacDonald said, "Assisting with today's (July 10) crash were Kezar Lake Marina, Stoneham Rescue, Fryeburg Rescue, Lovell Fire & Rescue and LifeFlight."

"The crash remains under investigation," said Cpl. MacDonald.

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