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This is a very tragic story . Please be very careful when deploying or retrieving anchor lines . This son will never know the joy of fishing with his Dad again : A recreational fisherman died on Sunday morning after he fell off his boat near Montauk Point and drowned.

Marty L. McMillan, 51, of Wantagh was fishing with his son and two friends on his 30-foot boat, Xiao Mu Ji, when his leg became entangled in the boat's anchor line. He was dragged overboard and underwater, the U.S. Coast Guard and East Hampton Town Police said.

According to accounts given to police by the other men aboard the boat, including Mr. McMillan's 17-year old son, Cody, the group had been fishing for blackfish 11 miles northeast of Montauk Point and had been anchored in an area of Block Island Sound known as the Southwest Ledge when the accident happened.

Police said the boat's anchor line apparently became entangled in a lobster pot tether line while Mr. McMillan was attempting to pull up the anchor and move to a different spot. While he was trying to untangle them, the anchor line suddenly came tight as the tide carried the boat. Mr. McMillan was unable to get his legs clear and was pulled overboard. He was not wearing a life-preserver.

The other men repeatedly tried to pull the struggling fisherman from the water, but Mr. McMillan was pulled under the surface again and again. When the anchor line became entangled in the boat's propeller, Coast Guard officials said, the men could not maneuver the boat to relieve pressure on the anchor line.

A Coast Guard spokesman, seaman Darryl Lanki, said that a distress call went out from the Xiao Mu Ji about 9:30 a.m.

Mr. McMillan was pulled unconscious from the water aboard the Vivienne by its Captain John DeMaio, a charter captain who had been fishing nearby. He administered CPR but felt no pulse.

A Coast Guard boat from Montauk arrived at the scene but the decision was made to keep Mr. McMillan aboard the Vivienne for the half-hour ride to Montauk. He was pronounced dead at Southampton Hospital. Another Coast Guard boat from Pt. Judith, Rhode Island, towed the Xaio Mu Ji to the Coast Guard station in Montauk.

Capt. DeMaio said the Xiao Mu Ji's anchor line was wrapped tightly around Mr. McMillan's ankle and that there was a rope-burn on his neck.

"In a situation like that, you don't have much time," said Capt. DeMaio, who has been a Montauk charter boat captain for 36 years. "When he went over, somebody would have had to jump over with him with a knife to cut him free. Then with the line in the wheel, they couldn't run uptide to get enough slack in the line. One thing compounded another."

He said there was great tension on the line because the currents in Block Island Sound are very strong. He noted that the anchor line was of a heavier gauge than most boats that size would use, which increases the force of the tide on the line.

"It's a bad place for anchoring, it's vicious there," Capt. DeMaio said, noting that he and others in the vicinity became aware of the emergency aboard the Xiao Mu Ji only when they saw a flare fired by Cody McMillan. "I was only a football field away but even in the best scenario I don't think we would have gotten him up in time."

Mr. McMillan lived in Nassau County but had been fishing in Montauk most of his life. He berthed his boat, a 30-foot aluminum sportfish he helped design himself, at Westlake Fishing Lodge in Montauk. The marina's owner, Ed Miller, said the mood was solemn there on Sunday as word of the accident spread. Many of the marina's boaters had heard Mr. McMillan's son's panicked call for help on the marine VHF radios on their own boats.

"It's just a tragedy," Mr. Miller said. "He loved fishing with his son. They were very good fishermen. They went together all the time and ... were very adventurous."

The other two men on the boat, identified by police as David Bargeron of Pennsylvania and Demitrius Touloupakis of Massachusetts, had been invited fishing by Mr. McMillan and his son through an internet forum website dedicated to fishing discussions. They had only met that day for the first time.

Mr. McMillan was a Missouri native who moved to the East Coast in the 1970s. He owned Intelli-Tec Security Services, a security alarm business in Westbury. The firm's website says that it is the 56th largest private security company in the country.
Father and son
 

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Very sad.
 

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Wow I've talk to that guy a few times. He used to make huge long runs for tuna in the northern canyons. What a terrible story. He made the coolest offshore fishing vids you'll ever see.
 

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Sad indeed ,you can read more about it here Saltwater Fishing Discussion Board Including Inshore Fishing, Offshore Fishing, Saltwater Fly Fishing and Kayak Fishing

10 posts down ,His sons account is a little differnt,what a horrible thing for him to witness.
That is heart wrinching. I was with my dad when he passed away at 63. It was not as sudden as that but still know what that boy is feeling. life changing experiances that will be with you the rest of your life. Sad as he sounded like a really good guy & dad.
 

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Very sad story indeed...Sorry you had to share it...Can happen to anyone...Please let's all be extra safe this winter.....bill
 

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Wow, I can't imagine having something like that happen to someone on my boat. I would probably give the thing away when I got back to shore. What a horrifying experience. Goes to show you how things can go bad real quick. Safety should always be your number one priority.
 

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Wow I've talk to that guy a few times. He used to make huge long runs for tuna in the northern canyons. What a terrible story. He made the coolest offshore fishing vids you'll ever see.
Very tragic indeed...I wish the family the best.

He did make some good videos and was a good fisherman...I think he even tried to teach Tred Barta how to striper fish!!!
 

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Unbelievable how we can think that a simple task, so ingrained could be our last.

Very Sad.

MY BEST TO THE FAMILY,
 

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That's no way for a fisherman to die - and right before the holidays-damn.
The old salts carry a knife on their belt- know I see why.
 

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That's no way for a fisherman to die - and right before the holidays-damn.
The old salts carry a knife on their belt- know I see why.
It ain't just for "deadliest catch" on the show they were talking about each deckhand had a knife @ all times and to watch their feet around lines.
Prayers to the famiy @ this tragic time I lost both my grandparents over the hoildays as a kid on on Christmas Eve one on New years day
 

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Mike, thanks for posting this story because this will help others be more careful out there especially in cold weather. Very tragic story! I was just up fishing westlake in late september
 

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WOW, what a tragedy. Things sure can happen quick on the water....not like a car, you can just pull over. The lesson hear is to be carefull...especially with winter water temps and as unimportant as it seems, we shouls all be wearing a knife while on the boat.
 
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