ANGLESEY MAN FALLS THROUGH ALASKAN LAKE ICE

Andrew Weare Late of Llangefni
Lives To Tell The Tale



I have news to share with about one of Llangefni’s sons of old, Mr Andrew Weare, brother of his twin, Mr Gordon Weare (now resident) in beautiful New Zealand.

Last week, April 11, 2011, Andrew was walking around University Lake in Anchorage, where he has lived for many years.

When SUDDENLY...



Andrew Weare and Sable (aka 'The Beast')

Andrew Weare & 'The Beast', Sable



Just a normal day, Andrew described it, very much like every other day he and his much loved two year old dog, Sable sauntered in performance of their daily ritual.

Andrew is fascinated by the wildlife in this North West Frontier area of the United States and his knowledge of the Alaskan wildlife and character is both compendious and occasionally frightening.

He is not one of those fools who are likely to take any unnecessary risks because although Alaska is astonishingly beautiful it is also incredibly dangerous. I need to establish his sensible nature and common sense upfront.

Anyway, a normal day like any other and Andrew spotted what he assumed was a beaver frozen into the ice.

Andrew Weare has an interest in beavers and is regularly sharing his observations about a particular beefy one weighing about 50lbs and its family near the lakeshore of University Lake.

Having been in the area the previous day he had concluded that the ice would still be as solid as before. So Andrew wandered across to confirm that it was a dead beaver, leaving Sable on the shore to watch his lord and master wander off.



Andrew Weare and Sable (aka 'The Beast')

Andrew Weare & Beautiful Wolf at Anchorage Zoo



I’ll allow the KYLE HOPKINS of the Alaska Daily News to share the rest of the news with you.

Weare, 52, crashed through the thawing ice, and was suddenly submerged in water. There were no creaks or cracks to warn him of the plunge. His feet never did touch the bottom, he said.

It was shortly after 10 a.m. Monday, near the narrow waist of the lake.

"I kept going under water and I stretched my arms up knowing the hole would be around there somewhere. I drew and drew and then I got to the top," said Weare, a transplant from Wales, United Kingdom.

Weare was kicking his feet as the undertow threatened to tug him beneath the ice, he said.

A counselor's assistant at the Clitheroe Center in Anchorage, Weare credits years of martial arts lessons and multiple black belts with helping him act quickly in the freezing water.



Andrew Weare - University Lake, Anchorage

The offending ice hole a few days later.



His 2-year-old husky, Sable, watched franticly from the shore, running figure eights. There would be no Rin Tin Tin rescues.

Instead Weare hollered for help, knowing that dog park regular Eric Nordhougen, 33, and his schnauzer were nearby. Another dog walker, whom police did not identify, came to help, too.

Weare saw Nordhougen break a long, thin branch off a tree. Probably beaver-chewed, he said. The two rescuers, staying low as they came out on the ice, extended branches to him.

"I had two big chunks of tree slide my way," Weare said. Eventually the men pulled him to safety. "They're good strong guys, so out of the water I came," he said.

Weare saw paramedics as soon as he reached shore. He can't remember what happened after that. He was incoherent, according to police. Confused and unable to describe what happened. Police said he was severely hypothermic.

The next thing he recalls is being treated at Providence hospital. There was blood on his glasses, he said. "They reckon I hit my head on something."



Andrew Weare, Mariah and Sabine (aka 'The Beast')

Andrew, Mariah and 'The Beast', Sable



As Weare was rushed to the hospital, Sable was taken to the animal shelter -- the husky mix was originally a pound puppy -- where Weare's wife picked her up.

The dog stretched out at Weare's feet as he retold the story at the couple's home Monday afternoon.

Weare rubbed Sable's belly. She loves the dog park, he said.








ALASKAN DAILY NEWS LINKS


May I respectfully guide you for further news reports and an excellent description by Andrew of his experiences, which he seems to deal with objectively. I'd still be shaking and would forever decline any drink on the rocks.

Two items for your consideration:

  • Isn't Sable great?

  • Look behind Andrew's left shoulder and there you'll find the picture of Washi Bach. He's the tramp who used to visit Llangenfi and is a common childhood experience the Weare Twins and I share. If you're from Anglesey, then have a look and share any memories with us.

    Andrew Weare's Video Interview

    Alaskan Ice Break Up Editorial



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