Back in June, a man drowned after trying to swim across a heritage park pool. He was caught in overgrown weeds, which eventually resulted in his death despite his non-swimming cousin’s heroic attempt to save him. The body of 43-year-old Jason Owens was discovered afterwards at the bottom of Flour Cotton Mill pond at Greenfield Valley Heritage Park by an underwater search team.

Last Friday during a hearing, coroner John Gittins heard how Jason had head to the pool with Anthony Daly, his cousin, at about 4.30pm after finishing work a few hours before. It was also made known that Jason had a few drinks after work before heading back home to meet his cousin. According to Anthony, the pair took a couple of drinks along with them to the park. After they ran out of drinks, Jason made a bet with Anthony that if he managed to swim across the pool, Anthony would have to buy the drinks. Anthony agreed with the bet as he brushed it off as a joke. Jason, who his family described as a strong swimmer, then took off some of his clothes and jumped in. He was approximately three-quarters of the way there when he began to get into trouble.

Anthony, who was unable to swim himself, rushed to the other end. However, by the time he got there, Jason was no longer in sight. Initially Anthony went into the pool, but after he faced difficulty himself, he had to get out. Eventually, a man nearby called for help. When the search and rescue team arrived at the scene, their search for Jason’s body was hampered by the density of pond weed. It was only after the fire service dredged the pool and a second search was launched that Jason’s body was found.

Based on the report from Dr Mark Atkinson, who was the one in charge of carrying out the post-mortem, there were no signs of physical injury or natural disease. There was also nothing to suggest that he had been taken ill. However, there was alcohol in his system and it may have contributed to some part of the drowning. For the full story, it can be viewed here.

Happy Fish Swim School would like to remind the public not to consume alcohol and follow it up with a swim, even if it is in the public swimming complex. It is a dangerous risk to take and should be avoided at all cost. To find out more about what we have to offer, please refer to our website.