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Gold Beach mother drowns in Rogue R.

A Gold Beach woman drowned in the Rogue River Monday afternoon, according to the Curry County Sheriff’s Department.

Cherie Michelle Jarnigan, 38, was spending the day at the east end of Huntley Bar with her two children, ages 2 and 5, and friend Chandra Sinnot and her infant child. While Jarnigan was trying to retrieve a flying disc from the river at Huntley Park, about six miles east of Gold Beach, she entered deep water and lost her footing, eyewitnesses said.

Sinnot tried to save Jarnigan, but they were both swept down river. A man camping at Huntley Park heard the commotion and jumped in the water to help the pair, authorities said. 

Sinnot and the man somehow managed to get Jarnigan to the opposite side of the river.  

Sheriff’s dispatch received two 911 calls from people at the park. Sheriff John Bishop and Deputy Terry Brown responded in a vehicle while Deputy Walter Scherbarth responded by boat. When they arrived, they found Jarnigan was on the east side of the river, accessible only by boat.

Several passengers from a Jerry’s Rogue Jet Boats were attempting to administer CPR to Jarnigan.

Bishop and Brown were transported across the river by a Jerry’s Rogue Jet Boat operated by Darin Stichter. They found Jarnigan unresponsive and placed her on the bow of the jet boat. Brown and nurses onboard continued CPR while they were transporting her to a waiting Cal Ore Life Flight Ambulance. Paramedics continued lifesaving efforts while Jarnigan was transported to Curry General Hospital, where she was pronounced dead.


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