Medical Issue Eyed in Fatal Jet Ski Incident

ORLAND — A local man who died Sunday afternoon after falling off of his Jet Ski on Toddy Pond may have died as the result of a medical issue.

Ross Staples, 52, was pronounced dead at the scene by medical personnel after attempts to revive him failed, according to a press release from the Maine Warden Service.

Staples, who reportedly was not wearing a life jacket, fell off of his Kawasaki Jet Ski while going from the boat launch to a beach at around 3:20 p.m. Sunday.

Witnesses reported seeing Staples fall off the machine and then get back on. Then, approximately 50 feet from the shore, Staples fell off the Jet Ski again and struggled to get back on.

Witnesses called 911 and some went in to the water, pulling Staples to shore, where CPR was administered. A boat was then used to bring Staples to rescue personnel, who were unable to revive him.

“We think it was a medical issue,” said Warden Service spokesman Doug Rafferty Tuesday morning, referring to what may have led to Staples’ death.

Rafferty said the Medical Examiner’s Office will determine the specific cause of death.

A spokesman for the Medical Examiner’s Office said Tuesday morning that that determination had not yet been made.

The spokesman said if a full toxicology report is ordered, as a precaution, it could take up to four weeks for those results to be available.

Staples lived on Back Ridge Road in Orland, according to town office staff.

For more of the latest news, pick up a copy of The Ellsworth American.

Steve Fuller

Steve Fuller

Reporter at The Ellsworth American,
Steve Fuller worked at The Ellsworth American from 2012 to early 2018. He covered the city of Ellsworth, including the Ellsworth School Department and the city police beat, as well as the towns of Amherst, Aurora, Eastbrook, Great Pond, Mariaville, Osborn, Otis and Waltham. A native of Waldo County, he served as editor of Belfast's Republican Journal prior to joining the American. He lives in Orland.
Steve Fuller

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