Note: We do not typically carry stories this far outside of our listening area because we primarily focus on local news at our stations in NCK. However, this a pertinent and timely story because of, and also in-spite, of its tragic nature. We all need to take this story to heart with Waconda, Lovewell and Wilson Lakes being such staples of our local listening area. As well as with Memorial Day Weekend approaching quickly in the next few days to kickoff the unofficial start of summer.
The story is a reminder to us all who spend time at the lake or frequent the water to use solid judgment. Also, to recognize how quickly life can turn on a dime when you’re just out having a good time, and how truly important it is to practice safety habits and not just go through the motions. It could be you or someone you care about whose life could be changed forever or ended in an instant.
Authorities in Missouri allege a Kansas man was intoxicated when the boat he was operating struck a rock bluff on the Lake of the Ozarks in central Missouri sometime before 2 a.m. in the wee hours of Saturday morning this past weekend, May 19.
Hayden Frazier, 22, of Overland Park, was released from jail Sunday morning. He was arrested Saturday on three preliminary charges of boating while intoxicated involving a death of another person(s). Frazier and four friends were on the boat at the time of the crash.
Three of them are now dead, and another is in serious condition at a Springfield, MO hospital. All were friends, former school mates and graduates of Olathe High School. Frazier, apparently, was not seriously injured.
The Missouri Highway Patrol on Sunday identified the three victims who were killed. They include 23-year-old Joseph LeMark, of Overland Park; 24-year-old Daniel Lewis, of Overland Park; and 21-year-old Hailey Hochanadel, of Olathe.
Authorities say the fifth occupant of the boat, 21-year-old Ashley Lamb of Olathe, was in serious condition after being flown to a Springfield, Missouri, hospital.
The crash happened before 2 a.m. Saturday, throwing three people into the water, authorities said. All five people involved were friends who graduated from high school in Olathe.
Accident reports say Frazier, Hochanadel and LeMark were ejected from the boat and into the water when the crash occurred. State Patrol Sgt. Scott White said Frazier climbed back aboard and paddled the 1991 Regal Runabout across the channel to a dock at Simmons Point.