West St. Mary grad dies in boating accident - KLFY News 10

West St. Mary grad dies in boating accident

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Blaine Tabb, a recent West St. Mary High graduate and former center for the school's football team, was found dead following a boating accident on the Atchafalaya River on Saturday.

According to Tabb's uncle, Joseph Tabb, Blaine and a friend were driving their boat just a few miles from Myette Point boat landing in Franklin, when they struck a tree around 4:30 a.m.

The Iberia Parish Sheriff's Office says Tabb's friend was able to swim to shore and call for help. Authorities say Tabb's friend was wearing a life vest; 20-year-old Tabb was not.

Neither authorities, nor the Tabb family, are releasing the age or identity of Blaine's friend. But, Joseph Tabb says he has "minor bruises and cuts."

Joseph Tabb says his nephew was working as a fitter for a construction company following graduation from high school this year.

"I've been here quite a few times when this has happened. I've heard of it happening a lot and my dad has seen it quite a bit over here over the years. We've lost quite a few people out here," says boater Richard Benson.

Benson, of New Iberia, says he has been fishing in the Atchafalaya River for 45 years and has experienced, first-hand, the dangers of early morning boating.

"You can't see anything because it's dark. You solely depend on Qbeams or spotlights. You have fog on the river because of temperature change and you have to be extra careful for logs," says Benson.

 

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