CHINA — The death of the swimmer whose body was found in China Lake this week was accidental, a state official said Wednesday.

Tye Feihel, 43, of New York, disappeared Tuesday afternoon after going for a swim and drowned, according to a statement by Mark Belserene, administrator for the Office of the State Medical Examiner.

Feihel had made the roughly 1.25 mile swim from his family’s camp to the Lakeview Country Store hundreds of times before, according to his family.

He had autism and schizophrenia, but was not on medication at the time of his death, according to the Maine Warden Service, which led the search for Feihel on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.

Feihel’s family lives in North Merrick, N.Y., according to records at the China Town Office. They have been spending summers in China since 1969, according to his mother, Clemence Feihel.

Sergeant Dave Chabot of the Maine Warden Service said that swimmers should stay within 100 feet of shore, swim with a partner and use a life safety vest, particularly when swimming long distances.

Matt Hongoltz-Hetling — 861-9287

[email protected]


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