Scottville man rescued from Pentwater Lake

January 29, 2013

PENTWATER — Officers from the Pentwater Police were dispatched to “calls for help” at approximately 12:52 p.m. today near the intersection of Old State Road and Lake Street. Upon investigation officers discovered that a 39-year-old Scottville man, later identified as Brian Gramza, had fallen through the ice on Pentwater Lake. The incident occurred approximately 300 yard from shore east of the Pentwater Township Boat Launch.
Officers responded to the township boat launch and learned that Gramza had been pulled from the water by a nearby fisherman, Walter Gebhart, according to Police Chief Laude Hartrum.
Gebhart told investigators that he heard Gramza’s call for help and saw him submerged in the water up to his shoulders hanging onto the ice. Gebhart quickly grabbed a length of rope from his gear and threw it to Gramza who was able to hold on while Gebhart pulled him from the water. Grebhart reported that Gramza was in the water for approximately 20 minutes, Hartrum said.
Officers directed all nearby fisherman to leave the ice while Pentwater Fire Department used their “hover craft” to clear the lake and make sure no one else had fallen through the ice. No one else was discovered. The Oceana County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team responded and stood by while the ice was checked. No other victims were found.
Gramza was treated at the scene by Oceana EMS and released.
“This was an extremely dangerous situation.,” Hartrum said. “Responding officers were not able to see out onto the ice due to heavy fog. When the fire department checked the ice it was only an inch thick at the spot where our victim went through. It’s important that fisherman use good common sense when going out on the ice and make sure not to go out when conditions are bad. Weather shift make it very dangerous. The hero of the day is Mr. Gebhart without his quick thinking and action this would have had a different ending.”
Pentwater Police were assisted by Pentwater Fire Department, Oceana County Sheriff’s Office Dive Team, and Oceana EMS.

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