Sailor Tangled in Rope Dies


A Huntington Beach recreational sailor died after becoming entangled in the mooring rope of a nearby yacht in the Los Angeles Harbor, authorities said.

John Barnett Cramer, 52, was discovered by his wife about 8 p.m. Thursday near Berth 44 in his sailboat with the rope under his chin, Los Angeles County coroner spokesman Scott Carrier said.

He said it was unclear whether Cramer died as a result of strangulation or something else.

"He was found in a sitting position, the rope was under his chin and there was a small abrasion under the chin," Carrier said. "But it is very possible he had a heart attack."

"There does not appear to be anything amiss or involving foul play in this case," he added.

Authorities said Cramer's wife had dropped him off at the berth earlier in the day so he could complete some repairs on his boat.

She expected him to sail to a location in Huntington Beach where they had planned to meet.

"When he didn't show up . . . she became concerned," Carrier said. "She went back to the berth where she dropped him off."

It was not known when Cramer became tangled in the rope of the adjacent 65-foot motor yacht, authorities said.

Cramer's wife called paramedics, who pronounced him dead at the scene at 8:45 p.m.

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