2nd rafter in 5 days dies in Rogue River's Blossom Bar rapid

GOLD BEACH, Ore. - A second rafter in five days died in the same rapid on Oregon's wild and scenic Rogue River.

Steven Boyd, 66, of Walla Walla, Washington, died July 17 after his boat overturned in the Picket Fence channel of Blossom Bar rapids, the Curry County Sheriff's Office said.

A South Carolina man died in the same place July 12.

Boyd and a crew of other experienced rafters were thrown into the water when their raft hit boulders and overturned in the river.

Boyd hit his head on a rock, the sheriff said. The other rafters got through the rapids with minor injuries.

The sheriff's office was notified just before 3 p.m. Marine Deputy Ted Heath and Sheriff John Bishop responded to Foster Bar downstream and traveled upriver to the Blossom Bar area.

An air ambulance also responded to the area. Medics determined Boyd was dead at the scene.

The sheriff's office said the Class IV rapid is treacherous in current low water condtion. The area is accessible only by boat or helicopter, the sheriff said.

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