2 Men Drown Off Fiesta Island

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Two men died Monday after being pulled out of Mission Bay, where they had fallen from their 12-foot fishing boat near Fiesta Island, officials said.

The men, Jose Hernandez, 63, and his son Juan Jose Hernandez, 40, were seen falling off their boat about 8 a.m. by a passer-by, who reported the incident to city workers nearby, said Lt. Brant Bass, a city of San Diego lifeguard.

Rescue workers found the elder Hernandez about 20 yards from the western side of Fiesta Island and his son about 50 yards from shore.

Both men were unconscious, and rescue workers tried to revive them with cardiopulmonary resuscitation, Bass said.

Juan Hernandez was taken to UC San Diego Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 4:28 p.m., said Sheri Smith, a hospital spokeswoman.

Jose Hernandez was taken to Mission Bay Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 9:17 a.m. in the hospital emergency room, Deputy Coroner Jack Larkie said.

He said police received a call from an unidentified woman shortly before 8 a.m. that two men were having difficulty getting into their boat in Mission Bay. A small-craft advisory had been issued Monday.

The aluminum fishing boat was found going in circles, its motor idling, about 200 feet from the island's shore, Larkie said. Authorities did not know why or how the men fell out of the boat, and an investigation was continuing.

The elder Hernandez was a retired supervisor from the city's water department. He lived in the 3400 block of Juniper Street.

His son lived in the 1200 block of Madera Street in San Diego.

Neither man was wearing a life preserver, as required for that size boat in Mission Bay, Bass said.

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