Visitor, 83, dies on snorkel trip

Cayman Compass is the Cayman Islands' most trusted news website. We provide you with the latest breaking news from the Cayman Islands, as well as other parts of the Caribbean.
Cayman Compass is the Cayman Islands' most-trusted news website. We provide you with the latest breaking news from the Cayman Islands, as well as other parts of the Caribbean.

Update: Police have named the 83-year-old man who died May 15 after being found unconscious while snorkeling at Stingray City as Walter Franklin Steele, of North Carolina, United States.

Original story: An 83-year-old visitor from the U.S. died Tuesday after he went missing during a snorkel trip to Stingray City in Grand Cayman’s North Sound.

According to the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service, the man was reported missing from his vessel around 2:15 p.m. Tuesday. He was found unconscious by another watercraft a short while later.

CPR was administered while the visitor was brought back to shore and the man was taken to hospital by ambulance.

He was pronounced dead later Tuesday afternoon.

This is the second death of a snorkeler in less than a week. Doris Ann Sarauer, 64, a visitor from Minnesota, died Thursday, May 10, after getting into difficulty while taking part in a snorkeling tour off South Church Street.

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  1. My regards to the family and may he RIP .
    I know everyone thinks that I am crazy . No I am not, I just see something that everyone else are failing to see and understand that the Cayman Island Tourism could get some serious hurt from all of these tragic death happening while vacationing and snorkeling in the C.I . I know that autopsy are done in Cayman to find the cause of death . But sometimes it doesn’t stop there .

    I think that there are far too many of these tragic deaths happening far to often, to not want to know what else could be causing these people to get into these situations that causes the heart failure. I might be wrong , but I think that when one is not in the fittest health condition and you are in the water without a floation device on and you gets exhausted and starts going into panic mode , that all of this stress put on you in short period of time, could cause the heart failure.
    This 83 year old gentleman, I know nothing more about him than his age . Do we think that if this gentleman had someone in the water with him that could have helped and kept him calm, that that could have prevented all the stress that had built up in his body in that short of time . If there had been a trained Captain or mate in the water with him at the time that knew what to do and how to had handled the situation, couldn’t that had saved the tragedy .

  2. What it is about the subject that people are dieing while vacationing in C I , and we aren’t even interested in knowing anymore than what the Corner finds and says .
    Do we know that the rate of these tragic have gotten so high in Hawaii , that the Lawmakers are steping into the to do something about the it . Do we know what happens when the Lawmakers steps to address the issue ? This is what I am trying to get done , before the Lawmakers have to .

  3. Cayman Compass .
    Do you think that there’s something wrong with all the tragic deaths that are happening on our Islands , enough to start being concerned about , and start addressing this issue.

    I know that the Editor did an editorial on the subject sometime ago , but I think that editorial didn’t go far enough in the issue of the deaths of our Tourist /People.
    As a former experienced charter Captain with a high/ good safety record , I am seeing many problems that I believe that is contributions to this issue . I am just concerned for the safety of peoples lives .