Victims of tragic Bear Lake boating accident identified

Authorities say the people killed when a boat capsized on a Utah lake were a man, two of his daughters and one of their friends.

They were among seven people thrown into the chilly water when the boat overturned Monday amid a windstorm on Bear Lake, about 120 miles north of Salt Lake City.

Utah State Parks officials identified the man killed as 46-year-old Lance Capener, a local physician.

Two of his daughters — 7-year-old Kilee Capener and 13-year-old Kelsey Capener — and their friend 13-year-old Sierra Hadley were flown to Primary Children’s Hospital but died early Tuesday.

Lt. Eric Stucki says the other three people were hospitalized: Lance Capener’s wife, 42-year-old Kathy Capener, and two other friends, Tiffany Stoker and Tylinn Tilley, both 14.

All seven people are from Weber County.

They were in the water for at least two hours as rescuers tried to find them amid waves that reached 10 feet and frothed in the wind, said Mike Wahlberg, fire chief in nearby Garden City, Utah, who helped with the rescue efforts.

The water was about 53 degrees Fahrenheit.

“If you’re in that water, you could be dead within an hour, half an hour even,” Wahlberg said. “It’s a bad deal for you, and it can be hard to survive.”

Police said the group was reported missing at about 6 p.m. after failing to return from an outing on the lake that spans more than 112 square miles.

Utah State Parks Lt. Eric Stucki said a summer storm that rolled in over nearby mountains late Monday afternoon produced giant waves. Wind speeds reached 51 mph in Garden City, the National Weather Service said.

Wahlberg said conditions were some of the worst he’s seen and “about as extreme as it gets.”

He said the wind and waves ripped a floating plastic dock that belongs to a nearby Boy Scout camp into pieces.

The boat and its occupants were found about 6 miles north of the Bear Lake Marina, according to Stacey.

Stucki said a few other boats were on the water at the time, but no other injuries or accidents were reported.

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