Kayaker dies near mouth of Russian River


A San Rafael man died this afternoon while kayaking with a friend in rough waters on the Sonoma County coast near Jenner, sheriff’s deputies said Wednesday.

Around 1:40 p.m. a 911 caller reported that two kayakers had capsized in turbulent water at Goat Rock Beach, near the mouth of the Russian River.

One kayaker was already ashore when first responders arrived. He was transported to a hospital in Santa Rosa, deputies said.

Around 2:55 p.m. a California Highway Patrol helicopter spotted the other kayaker, unresponsive, floating roughly half a mile off shore. He was transported to the United States Coast Guard station in Bodega Bay and pronounced dead, according to deputies.

The victim was identified as Joseph Patrick Woods, 63.

Investigators said they do not suspect foul play or criminal activity and offered their condolences to the victim’s loved ones.

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