Volunteer Colton firefighter drowns while fishing

Credit: Colton Fire Dept.

Volunteer Colton firefighter drowns while fishing

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by Jeff Thompson, KGW.com Staff

kgw.com

Posted on April 1, 2012 at 1:27 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 2 at 1:10 PM

ESTACADA, Ore. -- A 21-year-old volunteer for the Colton Fire Department drowned during a fishing trip on Lake Harriet Saturday night, police said.

Justin Lee Fraijo, of Colton, was fishing east of Estacada with his brother, Jeremy, when the boat they were in flipped, according to Deputy Nate Thompson of the Clackamas County Sheriff's Office.

A witness called 911 from the nearby Timber Lake Job Corp.

Fraijo went under and did not resurface, but his brother was able to cling to a stump about 50 feet from the shore, the witness reported. Their father swam out with a spare tire and a rope to rescue Fraijo's brother, who was then taken to Willamette Falls Hospital and treated for hypothermia.

Rescue crews searched the lake and found Fraijo about 75 feet from the shore. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

"Justin was a great firefighter and asset to the department," Colton Fire Chief Richard Beaudoin said Sunday. "It didn't take long for me to see the qualities that Justin brought to the department and I looked to him to become a leader within the organization. There will be a great loss felt not only in the Colton Fire Department, but to the community as a whole."

Justin's brother, Jeremy is a Portland firefighter.

A community memorial for Fraijo was planned at Colton High School on Saturday, April 7, starting at 2 p.m.

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