Avon couple rescued from Yarmony Rapid by Steamboat boaters
RADIUM — A couple from Avon is very grateful after being rescued by a group of Steamboat boaters on the Upper Colorado River. Markus Klett and his wife, Kelly, were on the river Saturday when their boat capsized near Yarmony Rapid.
“We knew it wasn’t going to be a good situation,” Steamboat boater Greg Landos said.
Landos was with Steamboat resident Ryan Doughty in a raft parked in an eddy, with Doughty’s kayak tethered to the raft. Both are certified in swift-water rescue and noticed the Avon couple was older and didn’t have their life jackets zipped up.
“These people were not prepared for what they were getting into,” Landos said.
Another raft was nearby with Steamboat residents Mike Giordano and Flavia Flores. Doughty jumped into his kayak, and even before the Avon couple reached the rapid, Landos and Doughty were headed that way anticipating a rescue.
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“We knew it wasn’t going to be a good situation,” Landos said. “They went down so fast.”
“We kept getting pulled under and banged around while losing body heat rapidly,” Markus Klett wrote in an email to the Steamboat Pilot & Today.
The Steamboat boaters pulled the couple to safety.
“Without them, we would not be alive,” Klett said. “Although I am a very strong swimmer, I got very weak due to hypothermia and my wife swallowed a lot of water.”
Doughty said he was happy to see they survived.
“I just happened to be at the right place at the right time,” Doughty said.