Peter Apokedak, 07-28-06


Man drowns in river despite son's efforts

Published: August 1, 2006

A Levelock man died when his skiff overturned and he became entangled in a rope in the Kvichak River on Friday, Alaska State Troopers said.

The man's 17-year-old son was with him at the time and tried to save him but could not. The teenager walked overnight through muddy creeks and swampy land to the nearest lodge to alert authorities after the accident.

Peter Apokedak, 42, and his son Charles Apokedak had been collecting firewood and were bringing it home when their 14-foot skiff had engine problems about eight miles from the village. A wave swept over the boat and it sank. The two were not wearing life jackets, troopers said.

Charles tried to reach his father twice under the skiff but didn't know he was entangled.

"He was trying to help his father but he didn't know why his dad was sinking," said Trooper John Holm.

The boy was not seriously injured.

Peter Apokedak's body was recovered Sunday.

Levelock, population 55, is on the west bank of the Kvichak River, 10 miles inland from Kvichak Bay, and 280 miles southwest of Anchorage.

-- Anchorage Daily News