Kayaker rescued after more than 34 hours on Lake MI

Members of the aircrew from Coast Guard Air Facility Muskegon, Mich., stand with the man they rescued at Muskegon County Airport, Sept. 1, 2014. (U.S Coast Guard photo courtesy of Air Facility Muskegon)
Members of the aircrew from Coast Guard Air Facility Muskegon, Mich., stand with the man they rescued at Muskegon County Airport, Sept. 1, 2014. (U.S Coast Guard photo courtesy of Air Facility Muskegon)

MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — A 31-year-old man kayaking from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Muskegon was rescued after more than 34 hours on Lake Michigan by the Coast Guard Monday morning.

Matt Frymire was attempting to kayak nearly 80 miles across Lake Michigan. He was almost there when his body shut down.

(A photo of Matthew Frymire before he set off for a solo kayaking trip across Lake Michigan on Aug. 30. Courtesy of Facebook)
(A photo of Matthew Frymire before he set off for a solo kayaking trip across Lake Michigan on Aug. 30. Courtesy of Facebook)

“The plan was just to paddle. I wanted to paddle without sleeping,” Frymire said.

This isn’t the first physical challenge Frymire has done. Two years ago, he biked around Lake Michigan.

This year he took up kayaking. He planned the trip, packed everything he needed – food, radios and wet suits to stay warm.

The trip started out well, but the further he paddled, the bigger the waves became.

“It was getting dangerous because the waves were actually starting to break and go over me and everything,” Frymire said.

The waves in the area were reported to be around 10 feet with winds from 23 to 28 mph.

“Once the waves got big, I started getting sea sick really bad. I had food but I couldn’t keep anything down. I had been throwing up, so I just had no energy left,” said Frymire.

Exhausted and close to death, around 7:30 a.m. Frymire sent out a distress signal from his personal locator beacon.

The Coast Guard brought in a helicopter to rescue him – just 30 miles from his destination.

“I was really happy to see them,” said Frymire.

This was Frymire’s first attempt. He said if does it again, he wouldn’t do it alone – he would have a chase boat.

 

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