After two Orlando boys passed away following rowing practice, two families filed wrongful death claims. Gavin Christman, 13, and Langston Rodriguez-Sane, 12, both perished at Lake Fairview in September.
Christman’s father sued the North Orlando Rowing Club, the College Park Lions Club, which owns and leases the facility, and the U.S. Rowing Association, the national organization that regulates rowing activities nationwide, including this one, on Tuesday for wrongful death. It comes after Rodriguez-mother Sane last week filed a comparable complaint against the club.
The family of Christman is suing for $50,000 in negligence damages. The rowing club is accused of ignoring the storm’s “progression and failing to promptly inform the rowers and aid their safe return to shore,” according to the lawsuit.
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The rowing club allegedly permitted the kids to row “without monitoring adults on the water,” according to the lawsuit. Christman’s death was caused by a lack of safety measures and regulations, the lawsuit added.
The boat capsized on September 15 during practice due to an approaching lightning storm. While rowing on the lake with four other middle schoolers, Christman was thrown overboard. Rodriguez-Sane was taken to a medical facility.
After spending more than a day searching the lake, first responders discovered Christman’s body the following day. According to the lawsuit, an autopsy revealed he drowned before passing away from “possible cardiac arrest due to near lightning strike.”
North Orlando Rowing and College Park Lions Club have been contacted by WESH 2 but have not responded. They are among the parties mentioned in the case.
In a statement, U.S. Rowing said:
“U.S. Rowing is heartbroken by the events that took place on September 15, 2022, on Lake Fairview, and our deepest condolences go out to the families involved in this tragedy. Out of respect for the families involved, we feel it inappropriate to comment further at this time.”
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