Used 6/7/2021 under fair use from: https://keprtv.com/news/local/umatilla-sheriffs-deputy-drowns-in-rafting-accident
A Umatilla Sheriff's Deputy drowned over the weekend in a tragic rafting accident. The Umatilla County Sheriff's Office said Senior Deputy Jason Post, 34, drowned in the Minam River near Minam State Park in Wallowa County Oregon on Saturday. Officials said Deputy Post and three others were thrown from their raft. Deputy Post did not reach the shore and deputies found his body shortly after. The Sheriff's Office said Deputy Post was wearing a lifejacket.
Saturday afternoon a procession of Umatilla County Sheriff Deputies and other law enforcement agencies escorted Deputy Post from the Loveland Funeral Home in LaGrande to Pendleton, Oregon, where he was honored by local law enforcement and first responders.
Officials tell Action News Deputy Post started as a Reserve Officer for Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office in 2010 and was hired as a full time patrol deputy in 2013. In April, Deputy Post was hired as a Probation Officer with Umatilla County Parole and Probation. The Umatilla County Sheriff's Office said he was well respected and loved throughout the entire law enforcement community.
From Marcus Bracher via FB - I heard about this from a Coworker, who was an eye witness to the accident. Additional information: The river is higher than normal, and VERY swift and cold with snowmelt. It appeared that the raft may have been overloaded, as there were 4 adults on a (reportedly "small") raft laden for a multiday trip. The pilot missed the move to avoid the "Minam Roller" (Generally Class III) and entered its powerful hydraulic sideways. All of this being said, the rapid is generally not fearsome, so I assume that either the cold water prompted the victim to breath in water, or he was concussed by the heavy raft during the flip - perhaps both. I was hoping for more information from the Sherriff's office, but none has been forthcoming.
Glenna Alderson via FB: We just returned from a multi day trip on the grand Ronde river in the Wallowa mountains of Oregon . Many folks launch on the Wallowa and float down to the Grand Rhonde. While we were waiting to launch, Earl and I ran into a guy who ran jet boat trips. I think his name was Charlie. We were talking about the river and he informed us that he was the one who recovered the sheriffs body after he passed away on the Wallowa River a couple of weeks ago. He told us it was a one boat trip with four people. He said he was a very large man , maybe 300 pounds and that he was only wearing a small fishing vest for a life jacket. He also said that the man was very afraid of water. Apparently they went around the corner not too far down and hit one of the first holes sideways and flipped. The river is cold and was running about 6000 CFS. Everyone swam out except the sheriff. According to the jet boat driver who recovered him, the information he received was that there wasn’t much effort to swim to shore and/ or that the man was face down as he floated from the accident.