Night Boating Excursion on Lake Powell Ends in Tragic Teen Death

lake powell
Lake Powell. | stock.xchng photo



LAKE POWELL, AZ – Teenager Matthew Parker of Hurricane was thrown from a boat on Lake Powell July 28, suffering fatal injuries.  The boat hit a rock outcropping, throwing the young man overboard.

National Park Service rangers from Glen Canyon National Recreation Area report, according to NPS News Release, that Parker was with his boy scout troop, on a night boating excursion to Antelope Island for dinner.  (Antelope Island is an extension of a peninsula at Lake Powell which becomes an island during higher waters in the summertime, explained a representative with Glen Canyon National Park Service). The accident happened on the troop’s return boat trip to camp that night.

Another scout and an adult were also injured.  According to the NPS, those two sustained injuries from the impact but were not thrown from the vessel. The second scout was flown out by Classic Lifeguard helicopter for medical attention. The adult was transported by ambulance to Page Hospital.

Reports indicate that Parker died of traumatic injury and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The accident is under investigation by the Coconino County Sheriff’s Office with assistance from the NPS.  And Glen Canyon NRA reminds all boaters that operating a vessel after dark can be very hazardous. Glen Canyon NRA does not recommend that visitors boat after sunset.

Funeral services for Matthew Parker are scheduled to be held on August 6 at 11 a.m. in the Hurricane 8th Ward Chapel of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Friends of Parker have initiated an anti-bullying project in his honor.  St. George News story on that project can be found here.

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copyright St. George News 2011

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  • Char July 29, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    Sounds like the scouts at work again. They have so many deaths, something is wrong. Maybe the leaders need more training?

  • Angela Werner July 29, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Very tragic for the family….Thoughts and prayers go out to them!

  • cgif July 29, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    I think the scout leaders need to use more common sense when they are the caretakers of other people’s children, and out of state at that. Maybe if the scout leaders were charged for reckless endangerment it would change how they approach activities. I guarantee those leaders were taught better than that when they were boy scouts. Common sense says don’t take a boat out on a lake that you aren’t familiar with (or even if you are) after dark, especially at speeds that could result in such a tragic death~ if they had been putting around slowly, the boy wouldn’t have been thrown from it and killed~ the impact wouldn’t have been that severe. Just my thoughts…

  • Bev Lowe July 29, 2011 at 10:27 pm

    Hugs to the family of this child and all of those involved, accidents happen sometimes, that’s why we call them accidents. May they all find peace and understand why this happend to them.

  • Desiree July 31, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    to those of you blaming the scout leaders… I personally know them and TAKE GREAT OFFENSE to your words… Instead of the BLAME GAME-there should be some kind of voice inside your thick heads that know that things happen bad or good all the time and they may not be part of your plan in life… but they are defiantly part of HIS plan! stop the blame and oh I know send some positive thoughts to those suffering right now ….just a thought

  • Not a Mormon July 31, 2011 at 3:29 pm

    Take all the offense you want, Desiree, but he’s right to have said that not going out on the lake at night, or at high speed would have prevented this. Sure, not all accidents can be prevented, but we don’t have to help create them.

    Get off your high horse. I blame YOU for knowing these scout leaders “personally” and being complicit in their stupidity. If only you would have stepped up and told them to be safe. Hope you’re offended and that the family sues the scout leaders and you, you terrible, terrible person.

  • yourwordshurt July 31, 2011 at 7:13 pm

    Not a Mormon: You were not there and do not have all the facts. For you to disrespect the leaders by your unkind words is such a tragedy. I feel sorry for your opinion in the matter. Please….for the sake of the leaders, kids on the trip, Matt and his parents…if you don’t have anything nice to say, then I think it would be better to not say it if it’s going to hurt those who are already suffering so much.

    I know this personally….for I am Matt’s mother. 🙁

  • Not a Mormon July 31, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    And I’m the King of England.

    It’s such a mormon mentality to “play nice” and think that others should be somehow compelled to act how you want them to. What a childish thing to say, “if you don’t have anything nice to say…..” What is this, kindergarten? We don’t live in a bubble and there are “unsavory” people and opinions out there compared to the white washed farcical utopia that mormons believe they live in.

    Welcome to teh internetz

  • cgif August 1, 2011 at 12:26 am

    I didn’t mean to stir anything up, I apologize, I was only commenting on a previous comment about all the recent tragedies involving the boy scouts and their leaders. I am deeply saddened for the family (I don’t know any of you) and my thoughts and prayers definitely go out to you during this time of grief. I was merely pointing out that it could have been prevented had better care and judgement been used. Yes, accidents do happen, but this one, in my opinion, could have been prevented. Again, I am terribly sorry for your loss 🙁 My heart goes out to you.

  • Fred August 1, 2011 at 10:21 am

    Re: “not a mormon” but definetly a complete moron. Before you say anything else on this anonymous comment board, would you stand there and say these same things to the face of the family or the leaders who were at this accident. I would say probably not. It’s very easy to be mean and vicious when hiding behind a computer screen.

    And as a sidenote, when these comments boards showed up on various sites and newspaper websites years ago, it seemed like a novel idea. It’s to the point now that “all” comment boards should be eliminated due to the abuse that is witnessed by many regarding various subjects and issues. I sometimes read the comments and very seldom if ever write in one, but after the comments made here I couldn’t resist.

    • Sandi August 2, 2011 at 8:44 am

      Couldn’t agree more Fred! It’s amazing how hurtful, cruel, crass, vulger, stupid, and embarassing someone can be all while remaining “anonymous” Takes a real brave person to write such trash!

  • Asichacker August 1, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    I’ve never trusted Scout leaders. I feel that few if any have real outdoor/survival knowledge or any common sense to know when what they are doing is dangerous. to the boys they are charged to care for.

    Most, in my opinion are adrenaline junkies looking for the next outdoor thrill…the boys give them an avenue to show-off.

    It’s too bad that I’m stuck having to deal with it.

    • Asichacker August 1, 2011 at 2:58 pm

      FYI, I think that’s 4 or 5 Utah Scouts killed this summer.

  • Fred August 1, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    So what do we do when a child is killed during an activity while they are with their parents? Do we consider them unqualified or undertrained to be involved in the situation that resulted in the tragic event? Most scout leaders are family men and take care of these boys just as if they were their own. They are not reckless and purposely place these kids in danger.Let’s get real here, accidents happen. This was a tragic sad event for all involved. We can’t just go thru life thinking that these things can’t happen to us or loved ones.

  • Not a Mormon August 1, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    epic lulz Fred

    I say what I think online and in person at all times without exception to the surroundings or peoples’ feelings. Not one person who knows me expects anything but the scathing truth, be it positive or negative. It’s the only way to live, and its enjoyable when it makes people squirm. Don’t mormons believe in the truth?

    Voicing one’s opinion and the truth are never abuses. Keep your head in the sand and avoid things you don’t want to hear. In the real world, outside the foreign theocracy of Utah, this is how people behave. I’m here as a harbinger of the unstoppable reality-check headed for Utah as Americans and illegal aliens move here to reclaim this land for normal folks and dilute the deluded, poisonous Mormon influence.

    If you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen. A quote from one of my favorite books that uncannily sums up what many of us Americans living in the foreign theocracy of Utah strive for each and every day: “We have barred the gates, but can not hold them for long. We can not get out. They have taken the Bridge and the Second Hall…..We can not get out. The end comes. Drums, drums in the deep. They are coming.”

  • Jim Leishman August 1, 2011 at 9:19 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss. Know that not everyone out there is a bitter troll trying to hurt people that are grieving. “Not a Mormon” says he tells it as he sees it. He believes in the truth, yet he hides behind a psuedonym, “bravely” spewing hurtful words to grieving parents. If he really is as bold as he thinks he is, he would post his real name, email address and phone number where anyone who reads it could contact him and have a discussion about “truth”.

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