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  • April 13, 2009

    Man Drowns SCUBA Diving Off Of Anacapa Island

    This is a sad story and probably pretty preventable.

    A 65 year old man on his 14th SCUBA dive decides to go it alone….

    Man drowns scuba diving off Anacapa Island

    A Santa Barbara man drowned Friday while scuba diving off Anacapa Island, authorities said.

    John G. Koenig, 65, was diving around 1 p.m. on the north side near Cathedral Cove when other divers found one of his fins. A frantic search followed, and Koenig was found on the ocean floor, about 27 feet deep, said Craig Stevens, senior deputy Ventura County medical examiner.

    “The regulator was out of his mouth and he was lying there unresponsive,” Stevens said.

    Divers removed his weight belt and brought Koenig back to a recreational dive boat where efforts to resuscitate him were unsuccessful, Stevens said. CPR was performed for nearly 30 minutes, he said.

    An autopsy Saturday morning showed Koenig drowned, Stevens said. The autopsy showed evidence of cardiac disease, but no clear sign he suffered a heart attack. There was no other trauma found on his body, Stevens said.

    Koenig was by himself but among a group diving off the recreational dive boat Spectre out of Ventura Harbor, Stevens said.

    Koenig, described as about 6 feet tall and 180 pounds, started scuba diving in January, Stevens said. It was his 14th dive.

    The original article can be found here.


    1. A sad story indeed. What the hell was he doing Solo diving with only 14 dives under his belt! The DM’s on the boat should have questioned his skills before allowing him to venture out alone. But ultimately it was his own decision to do so….

      Comment by FrankPro1 — April 14, 2009 @ 11:21 am

    2. “Koenig was by himself but among a group diving off the recreational dive boat Spectre”
      There are a lot of new divers who don’t have a regular dive buddy yet. Many times they will ask a dive charter if they can hook up with a group or another buddy on the boat. Charters aren’t in the business of turning down money. It sounds to me as if he was diving amongst a group and nobody saw him stop for whatever reason. It happens all the time, even among buddy divers. One diver will stop to look under a ledge and the buddy will swim on for a ways before noticing his buddy is gone.
      Because he was a new diver, he may have freaked when a sea lion grabbed his fin, or he broke a fin strap. Anyone can panic, but someone in an unfamiliar situation has a higher risk.

      Comment by Phil Garner — April 16, 2009 @ 10:02 am

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      Comment by Alastair — April 29, 2012 @ 10:55 am

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