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DMR Home > Marine Patrol > Penobscot River Search

Maine Marine Patrol Leads Search for Two in the Penobscot River

The Maine Marine Patrol led a search that involved the Bucksport Police and Fire Departments, the Maine State Police and the US Coast Guard for two people who fell in the Penobscot River at approximately 10:30 Friday morning, both of whom died in the swift current.

The boy, Aiden Bulkley, age five of Bangor, was pulled from the water within minutes by Officer Dan Harlan of the Bucksport Police Department and Lieutenant Roderick Charette of the State Police and transported to Eastern Maine Medical Center where medical personnel attempted unsuccessfully to revive him.

Aiden’s grandfather, Ronald LaRue, 54 of Mayfield, Kentucky, who jumped in to attempt to save Aiden but was overcome by the current, also died of apparent drowning.

According to Maine Marine Patrol reports, the two were fishing on the town pier just upstream of the bridge separating Bucksport and Verona Island when Aiden, who according to family was unable to swim, fell in the water. LaRue jumped in the water and attempted to save his grandson but the current was too strong and the two became quickly separated.

A passerby called 911 and Officers Harlan and Charette pulled the boy, who was found approximately 50 feet from shore, between 100 and 200 yards down river from the pier, to shore. The tide at the time of the incident was ebbing.

The Maine Marine Patrol received a call at approximately 11:30 and responded with two Patrol vessels, one of which was equipped with side scan sonar for underwater imaging. The Marine Patrol plane also flew over the area as part of the search.

LaRue’s body was recovered by a member of the Maine State Dive Team at 2:20pm in approximately the same location where Aiden was found.