Polson man drowns in Flathead Lake

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A Polson man has reportedly died of a accidental drowning in Flathead Lake.

According to information from the Lake County Sheriff’s Department, Search and Rescue, and Polson Ambulance responded to a call at 3:26 p.m. Saturday, August 4, of a man pulled from Flathead Lake who wasn’t breathing, and with no heartbeat.

Reports indicate Michael John Chernikoff, 34, of Polson, got out of the boat he was riding in and swam to Bird Island. On his swim back he had problems in the water. Passersby stopped in their boat to assist and pulled Chernikoff aboard. Finding him not breathing and no heartbeat, they called 911, began CPR and headed toward Finley Point State Park.

“Great effort was made to revive Michael, from the citizens from the boat to the emergency services personnel, but Michael passed,” said Lake County Sheriff Don Bell in a press release expressing his condolences.

The remains were sent to the Montana Crime Lab for an autopsy.

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