Man returned to hospital after swim in Agawam River

By Matthew Bernat | Sep 22, 2016
Photo by: Matthew Bernat First responders assist a man behind Merchants Way. He had left Tobey Hospital on Thursday evening and went for a swim in the Wareham River.

Wareham Police and EMTs coaxed a 46-year-old man out of the Agawam River after he left Tobey Hospital on Thursday evening.

According to eyewitnesses, the man, whose identity is unknown, swam approximately 20 yards into the river after crossing railroad tracks on Merchants Way.

Initial emergency broadcasts reported that the man exited Tobey Hospital at approximately 5 p.m. It’s unclear if he was a patient there.

Clad in nothing but dark shorts, he kneeled on the shore as EMTs and Wareham Police helped him to stand.

After about 10 minutes, he rose and walked slowly towards an ambulance with assistance from an EMT. First responders cleared the tracks a few minutes before the MassCoastal Energy Train passed through.

Emergency broadcasts reported the man was then administered a dose of Narcan, a drug used to reverse the effects of opioid overdose.

The man’s status is unknown at this time.

Comments (11)
Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 23, 2016 09:30

Hmmm, good one.  He's my age...makes me think.  I've got a wife, kids, and parents that love me.  He could too.  This guy may have the same.  My softer side feels bad for him.  This opioid thing doesn't discriminate and it is awful.  Somewhere in the middle I see a little humor.  Heck, it's funny that a dude decided to jump in the Wareham River  (Wankinco River, see next post).  The weather's great and the water's warm, why not?  Then, on the other extreme, some may see another Warehamy story with another junkie wasting our precious resources.  Three ways to look at it.         

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 23, 2016 10:41

That's not the Wareham River!  It's the Wankinco River back there along Merchant's Way where he decided to take a dip.  The Wareham River starts there at Besse's Park at the Narrows.  It's deep and may not have had such a happy ending had he jumped in there.

A little geography lesson:  The Wankinco originates in Myles Standish and passes by Tremont Nail.  The Agawam originates in Plymouth and passes through East Wareham (Glen Charlie).  The Wankinko and the Agawam converge behind Speedway where they both flow into the Wareham at The Narrows.  


Posted by: Spherebreaker | Sep 23, 2016 11:04

Looks like the convergence of the 2 rivers is closer to being behind the jug shop and bank. So technically he could have been swimming in the Wareham river if he was south of those locations. He would have been swimming in water predominantly from the Wankinko River if the results of my hydrological flow study is correct. This of course is an ever changing area with multiple depth dependent thermoclines and tidal flow affects. I have calculated the tides affect but need to add surface wind data to truly make the case for sure that it was the Wareham River he was swimming in. Coliform bacteria testing was positive so we know some water was from the Agawam.

Posted by: Matthew Bernat | Sep 23, 2016 12:16

Hi Wareham By The Sea, I checked with the Harbormaster and apparently it's the Agawam River. Looks like Google maps was wrong. I've corrected the article. Thanks for pointing that out!

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 23, 2016 12:32

Matthew, you are welcome.  It's definitely a bit confusing when three tidal rivers come together.  Depends on exactly where they found him. 

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 23, 2016 12:43

There's absolutely no coliform in the Agawam.  That would be impossible.  There is no nitrogen either.  The wastewater plant, all the private septic systems, and the cranberry farmers are 100% effective at removing all traces of both as well as any other pollutants.  That water is perfectly pure.  If it wasn't brackish we could pipe it directly into the system and skip building that new water treatment plant.    

Posted by: Spherebreaker | Sep 23, 2016 13:54

To prevent any further confusion, I propose that we rename this area the "Wagamakincom Confluence". There would be no mistaking where this is for anyone and it has a ring to it. We could use this for renaming for the start of big things. We could have the first annual Wagamakinkom Confluence Quahog fest and other such events. Wagamakincom ConfluenceWater Fire, maybe a Wagamakincom Confluenece tasting at the new dispensary. This could be really big! Think of the munchies the restaurants would sell. Just think about that for a while. Hat and shirt sales alone would fund the water treatment plant.

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 23, 2016 14:50

Good idea.  As long the fest is dedicated the to guy who went swimming.  He can be the guest of honor each year.  He's like Wareham's own Michael Phelps.    

Posted by: Linda | Sep 24, 2016 11:50

Years ago, at low tide, you could see the mud flats behind the Decas Block.  Mr. Maxim and Mr. Hammond placed scallop shells on them so the oyster spat would catch and grow on them.  As they grew, they moved the oysters to cleaner water and then harvested oysters.  I believe a percentage of the oysters went to the town.  It was called the Agawam River Propagation Program and they had to turn in a report to the town every year.  As a teen, we dove off the piers at Besse's  Park, totally different from the ones now there.  There were old boats, wood, metal, bikes, fishing poles and lines that we could have got caught onto.  When I saw what was down there, close to the wall ~ well, I stopped swimming there, in the Wareham River.  I grew up on the Agawam River, across from Oakdale.  Just call everything the Wareham River. lol

Posted by: Twiceburnt007 | Sep 26, 2016 01:59

Pardon me gentlemen while you two geniuses whip out and flex your brain cells but I'm reasonably certain that the exact nature of the article wasn't the location of this gentlemans aqueous  adventure but rather the reason he was in there. Taking into account the use of "Narcan" ,I'm quite cetain that making light of this article is in relatively poor taste and that HE may be important to some-one.

Posted by: Wareham By The Sea | Sep 26, 2016 14:41

Twiceburnt, I assume I'm one of the gentleman you are referring to.  Look all the way up top.  I opened the comments in a way that agrees with you.  I know.  It's sad.  He's most definitely important to someone.   He looks like a regular guy.  But how much can we dwell on the drug sadness.  There was nothing else to say, so the river became a point of discussion.  If he was one of my buddies I'd call him Michael Phelps to his face.  He probably see's the humor in it too.  No disrespect intended.  If we cant laugh about this stuff we'd cry. 

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