3 men rescued after fishing boat capsizes on Missouri River near tailrace

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PICK CITY, N.D. - Most times if you go overboard in the Missouri River, you don’t come back. Three men were fishing Monday night when their boat capsized and they went into the water.

But, an unlikely combination of events led to the men’s rescue and all three are alive today.

Their boat, which has been sitting on shore since last night, is broken in some places and covered in mud, but all things considered it could have been much worse.

“Oh, most times, it turns into a recovery, than a search and rescue,” said Mercer County Sheriff Dean Danzeisen.

Keith Orth was fishing Monday night when he heard an odd splash.

Police reports say three men were fishing on the Missouri RIver when they threw an anchor off the stern of the boat in fast moving waters.

“I finally heard somebody hollering, and at that time I realized that they had tipped over their boat,” said fisherman Keith Orth.

The men were tossed from the boat. Once Orth figured out what was going on he called 911 and ran to the ramp where he and another man got on the water and fished them out.

By all accounts, the men couldn’t have been any luckier.

“They were very fortunate that there actually was a fisherman onshore to see it, and one that was actually coming back from fishing to rescue them,” said Danzeisen.

“All of the stars were lined up on the 13th, because it actually was the 13th November,” said Orth.

Orth says they were able to pull two men onto the boat but had to throw a line to the third and pull him to shore.

“They were all quiet, of course hypothermia out of the water and gasping for air and basically relieved that somebody put their hands on them to get them,” Orth.

One other thing that helped save the men’s lives, all three were wearing life vests, without them Orth and the sheriff say their chances of survival would have been next to none.