It was just before 2:00pm when the first alarm was sounded that Hilton Ritchen of Brumble Street, Newtown was in trouble and in need of urgent assistance to save his life but according to some eyewitnesses, though help did arrive, it was too late for the much experienced fisher who was known to specialize in conch diving.
Police confirmed that about 1:50 pm on Monday 30 September 2013 and in the vicinity of Quality Trading Supplies on the Bay Road, the drowning incident is said to have occurred.
Initial investigation revealed that Ritchen got in to the sea alone, and a few minutes later his motionless body was pulled from the water by a relative. The District Medical Doctor was summoned to the scene, and pronounced him dead. A Post Mortem will be performed on the body at a later date to determine the exact cause of death, said a police statement.
At the time of the removal of the body many persons from the area had gathered and were in shock at what had happened. Included in the crowd were relatives of Ritchen some of whom broke down in tears as his body was removed by the emergency team.