CAMDEN — The body of James B. Wescott, father of Olympic snowboarder Seth Wescott and a longtime Colby coach, was found in Megunticook Lake after a day-long search.
The Maine Warden Service said that Wescott’s body was found at 8:34 p.m.
Earlier Tuesday, the Warden Service spokesman Cpl. John MacDonald said Wescott suffered a medical emergency and fell into the lake while sculling with a friend about 8 a.m.
Searchers used side sonar and recovered his body in 60 feet of water, MacDonald said Tuesday night.
Divers from the Warden Service, as well as Camden police and fire and the Megunticook Lake Patrol helped with the search.
MacDonald said that Seth Wescott, of Carrabassett Valley, had been notified of the search Tuesday afternoon and was en route to Camden Tuesday evening.
Maine game wardens, the Camden fire and police departments and the Megunticook Lake Patrol were participating in the search.
Wescott, 71, of Belfast, was a track and field coach at Colby College in Waterville from 1978 to 2003.
Lori Kletzer, vice president for academic affairs and dean of faculty at Colby, released a statement Tuesday saying the college community was “deeply saddened to learn of the presumed drowning” of Wescott, who was adjunct professor of physical education and athletics emeritus.
“Jim challenged and inspired many hundreds of student athletes,” Kletzer said in the statement. “A tremendously successful coach, Jim helped 11 athletes reach All-America status, some multiple times. While Jim recruited and trained great athletes, he insisted that they place academics at the center of their Colby lives, and many of the students he coached excelled in the classroom.”
Colby’s statement said an alumnus created the James B. Wescott Scholarship Fund in 1999 in Wescott’s honor. In 2003, the year he retired from Colby, Wescott was named New England Division III Coach of the Year.
Kletzer said Wescott “was an engaged citizen of the college,” and served on committees and attended lectures and arts events.
“Over the last decade, he remained actively engaged with the life of the College. Jim was a lovely man with a warm, generous spirit. He will be greatly missed.”