ATWOOD (KDKA) — A man died after falling through ice while fishing at an Armstrong County lake Saturday morning.
State police identify the man as 56-year-old James Whitlinger of Avonmore.
According to police, Whitlinger was ice fishing on Keystone Lake near the Atwood boat launch in Cowanshannock Township around 7 a.m. when he fell through the ice and into the water.
“It seemed typical for him to go out there at night and he typically spent the night on the lake ice-fishing. It was something he typically did, so there wasn’t any concern when he didn’t come home or anything,” Rural Valley Fire Department Assistant Chief Bill Rupert said.
First responders, divers, firefighters, police and paramedics were all called in to assist during the search.
Chief Rupert said his teams did everything they could, but it was just too late.
“He was experienced. He knew what he was doing. This is just how accidents happen. Maybe overestimated the ice was sturdy,” Chief Rupert said.
The Armstrong County Coroner pronounced Whitlinger dead at the scene.
State police are investigating.
Stay with KDKA for the latest on this developing story.