An 85-year-old man injured in a jet ski accident in Georgetown Saturday has been upgraded from critical to fair condition at Maine Medical Center in Portland, a hospital spokesman said.

Richard Russell, 85, of West Gardiner, was found floating face down in the water after falling from his jet ski near MacMahan Island at around 11:30 a.m. Local lobsterman Jamie Pinkham of Georgetown saw Russell fall, plucked him from the water and rushed him ashore at Robinhood Marina, according to Georgetown Fire Chief  Justin LoDolce.

“Jamie was hauling traps and saw it happen and I guess he floored it as fast as he could and found the guy upside down in the water,” LoDolce said Monday.

Russell was unconscious and unresponsive at that point, according to Cpl. Ian Alexander with the Sagadahoc County Sheriff’s Office. He was wearing a life jacket, which kept him afloat until help could arrive. A nurse from a nearby boat jumped aboard to perform CPR once Pinkham docked at the marina, and soon a doctor and second nurse joined to help from another boat.

“Thank god they were there,” Alexander said.

By the time Alexander arrived, Russell was groaning and coming to.


Russell was taken to Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick and later to Maine Medical Center where he was listed in critical condition over the weekend. He was upgraded to serious condition on Monday.

More than a dozen firefighters responded along with a paramedic from Mid Coast Hospital’s Advanced Life Support Program which provides support to Georgetown. Many members of the volunteer fire department were away Saturday, including LoDolce. However, the nurses and doctor were nearby to help.

“You never know, that person next to you, they could be your local hero or someone who will go above and beyond to help you,” LoDolce said. “The fact that Jamie was there to spot the incident, get over there and immediately work to get that guy out of the water; the fact that that nurse was right there and then to provide immediate (cardiopulmonary ) resuscitation on that individual, those folks are the heroes to this story.”

The Maine Department of Marine Resources was unable to provide the names of the nurses and doctor who helped save Russell’s life on Monday and no other information was available.

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