Search continues for 6-year-old boy swept into Merrimack River

Several Massachusetts agencies are still working to recover a 6-year-old boy who disappeared from the Merrimack River in Amesbury. State police said the search mission to find Mas DeChhat resumed at 8 a.m. Sunday after crews searched all day Saturday. The Massachusetts State Police Underwater Recovery Unit had 12 divers, along with four boat operators from the department’s Marine Unit, searching the river with the help of divers from the Massachusetts Fire Department. Boston. Other agencies participating in the search include the Amesbury and Newburyport Fire and Police Departments, the U.S. Coast Guard, and police and firefighters from surrounding communities. Mas’s mother, Boua DeChhat, 29 , from Lowell, drowned after jumping into the fast flowing river on Thursday evening to try to save her son and 7-year-old daughter. “We’ve seen several tragedies on the river, but usually not where an entire family is affected. It’s a sad situation, and we were very hopeful (Thursday) night. A lot of agencies – state agencies, local agencies – have been going to great lengths to try to find this 6-year-old,” said Newburyport Fire Chief Christopher LeClaire. State Police said Boua DeChhat, her 31-year-old husband and their children were fishing and swimming on Deer Island, a road-accessible recreation area that juts into the Merrimack River in Amesbury, near the line Newburyport. At around 7 p.m., the 31-year-old father returned to the family car in the small parking lot on the island to pick up some gear. Around the same time, Mas, who was on land by the river, grabbed a stick from the water and fell into the river. Mas’s sister tried to grab him as he began to be swept away by the fast current and she, too, fell into the river and began to be swept away. According to state police, Boua DeChhat, who could not swim, then entered the river to try to save her children. All three were carried upriver heading west to the nearby Whittier Bridge. At that time, the father had returned to the river bank and saw his daughter and his wife in the water. He entered the river to try to reach them, but he himself could not swim and began to struggle. State police said he returned to shore and grabbed a rock, managing to climb out of the river. He was taken to Seabrook Hospital in New Hampshire to be treated for hypothermia/exposure. saw the mother and daughter struggling in the water and pulled them onto his boat. Mas DeChhat was not seen in the water when his mother and sister were pulled out. I can. I’ve already called 911 on the way in and I’m doing CPR and finally a policeman pats me down and says, “Hey, let me take over.” And he takes over and I stand up and at that moment and at that second a little girl has stopped crying and is shouting: ‘My brother is still in the water,'” Bajko said. Boua DeChhat and her daughter have both were taken to Anna Jacques Hospital in Newburyport Boua DeChhat was pronounced dead in hospital and her daughter was treated and released The search for Mas DeChhat began immediately and continued late into the night The search resumed Friday morning and continued through early evening with negative results, prompting a suspension of the effort, Kailie Benson of U.S. Coast Guard Sector Boston said Friday evening. Given the intensive search efforts of the Coast Guard and numerous state and local agencies, as well as conditions on site, I have made the decision to suspend the search for the missing 6 year old boy. Our prayers are with the boy and the mother’s family and friends during this time. “The divers searching for Mas DeChhat use side-scan sonar, a device deployed from the side of a boat that uses sound waves to map and detect objects and anomalies in the water column and on the bottom. If an object is detected, divers descend on it to investigate, and divers holding tow bars are also pulled into the water by boats to cover the family’s funeral expenses.

Several Massachusetts agencies are still working to recover a 6-year-old boy who disappeared from the Merrimack River in Amesbury.

State police said the search mission to find Mas DeChhat resumed at 8 a.m. Sunday after crews searched all day Saturday. The Massachusetts State Police Underwater Recovery Unit had 12 divers, along with four boat operators from the department’s Marine Unit, searching the river with the help of divers from the Massachusetts Fire Department. Boston.

Other agencies participating in the search include the Amesbury and Newburyport Police and Fire Departments, the US Coast Guard, and police and firefighters from surrounding communities.

Mas’s mother, Boua DeChhat, 29, of Lowell, drowned after jumping into the fast flowing river on Thursday evening to try to save her son and 7-year-old daughter.

“We’ve seen several tragedies on the river, but not usually where an entire family is affected. It’s a sad situation, and we were very hopeful (Thursday) night. Lots of agencies – state agencies, local agencies – We’ve been trying very hard to try and find the 6-year-old,” Newburyport Fire Chief Christopher LeClaire said.

State police said Boua DeChhat, her 31-year-old husband and their children were fishing and swimming on Deer Island, a road-accessible recreation area that juts into the Merrimack River in Amesbury, near the line Newburyport.

WCVB via GoFundMe

DeChhat Family

At around 7 p.m., the 31-year-old father returned to the family car in the small parking lot on the island to pick up some gear. Around the same time, Mas, who was on land by the river, grabbed a stick from the water and fell into the river.

Mas’s sister tried to grab him as he began to be swept away by the fast current and she too fell into the river and began to be swept away.

State police said Boua DeChhat, who could not swim, then entered the river to try to save her children. All three were carried upriver heading west to the nearby Whittier Bridge.

At that time, the father had returned to the river bank and saw his daughter and his wife in the water. He entered the river to try to reach them, but he himself could not swim and began to struggle. State police said he returned to shore and grabbed a rock, managing to climb out of the river. He was taken to Seabrook Hospital in New Hampshire to be treated for hypothermia/exposure.

State police said the current carried Boua DeChhat and her daughter west under the Whittier Bridge and into the river west of the bridge, where a fishing boat operator saw the mother and daughter thrash in the water and pulled them onto his boat. Mas DeChhat was not seen in the water when his mother and sister were pulled out.

Mas De Chhat

WCVB via Family

Mas De Chhat

Mark Bajko, a bystander, said he and a policeman tried to administer CPR to Boua DeChhat after she was brought ashore.

“I’m going as hard as I can. I’ve already called 911 on the way in and I’m doing CPR and finally a policeman pats me down and says, ‘Hey, let me take over.’ And he takes over and I get up and at that moment and that second a little girl has stopped crying and is screaming, ‘My brother is still in the water,'” Bajko said.

Boua DeChhat and her daughter were both taken to Anna Jacques Hospital in Newburyport. Boua DeChhat was pronounced dead in hospital and her daughter was treated and released.

The search for Mas DeChhat began immediately and continued late Thursday night. The search resumed Friday morning and continued until early evening with negative results, leading to a suspension of the effort.

“It’s always a difficult decision to put a search and rescue case on hold, and even more painful when children are involved,” Captain Kailie Benson of the US Coast Guard Sector in Boston said Friday night. “Given the intensive search efforts of the Coast Guard and numerous state and local agencies, as well as the conditions on site, I have made the decision to suspend the search for the missing 6-year-old boy. Our prayers are with the boy and the mother’s family and friends during this time.”

Divers searching Mas DeChhat use side-scan sonar, a device deployed from the side of a boat that uses sound waves to map and detect objects and anomalies in the water column and on the bottom. If an object is detected, divers descend on it to investigate. Divers holding tow bars are also pulled through the water by boats.

State Police investigators assigned to the Essex District Attorney’s Office, as they are in all unnatural death cases in Essex County, are leading the death investigation.

A GoFundMe page has been created for the family’s funeral expenses.

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