By Marjorie Nesin
---- — A 46-year-old Gloucester woman and a 49-year-old man from Rhode Island have been identified as the two people who lost their lives in the waters off Eastern Point Sunday evening, according to Gloucester Police.
The pair, who were spotted by a witness in the waters off the Gonzaga Retreat House at around 5:10 Sunday, have been identified as Evelyn Howe, 46, of Gloucester, and David Machado, 49, who was visiting the area from Providence, R.I. Both were pulled from the waters by Gloucester Police and the U.S. Coast Guard at around 5:50, and were given CPR and other life-saving measures both aboard the Gloucester Police boat and at the U.S. Coast Guard Station Gloucester at Harbor Loop. But they were pronounced dead at Addison Gilbert Hospital.
Police are still investigating the circumstances of the incident.
But according to Police Chief Leonard Campanello, the rough water swept Machado in first, then Howe followed him into the waters off Brace Cove at Eastern Point.
”The weekend had brought us strong winds that had churned the sea up with heavy swells and apparently the two were caught off guard,” Campanello said this morning.
The rescue efforts began after a 911 call from a person who noticed Howe and Machado in the water, Campanello said. He said the two had been in the water for about 40 minutes at that time. The Coast Guard and Gloucester police immediately launched their boats and found the pair “face down” in the water about 5:53 p.m.
Gloucester Police officers Christ Frates and Anthony Giacalone first spotted the two in the water, and while officers lifted them from the water, Coast Guard personnel pulled up beside the police boat and boarded the vessel. Two Coast Guard officers performed CPR and lifesaving measures as police drove back to the Coast Guard station.
“Despite the lifesaving efforts of the Coast Guard, Gloucester Police and Fire Departments and personnel at Addison Gilbert Hospital, they were unable to be resuscitated,” Campanello said.
Both Howe and Machado were pronounced dead shortly before 8 p.m. Sunday.
“This is a tragic event for the families of the two victims as well as the community,” Campanello said, “a very hard lesson from the sea that, while enormously beautiful and majestic, should always be approached and enjoyed with respect and extreme caution.
“The ocean follows no rules or schedule and its unpredictability can cause this type of tragedy,” he said.
We will update this story later today here at gloucestertimes.com as more information becomes available. To have text updates regarding this story and other local breaking news coverage sent to your mobile phone, just sign up for the Times’ free text-alert service on the gloucestertimes.com homepage. For more up-to-date coverage, follow the Times news team on Facebook or on Twitter.com@gdtnews.
Marjorie Nesin can be reached at 978-283-7000, x3451, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.