A Woodbury man, who was exploring a tunnel with a friend along the Mississippi River in St. Paul Sunday morning, died when the tunnel filled with water and swept him into the river, according to St. Paul Fire Department officials.
The men, ages 29 and 30, got trapped in the tunnel south of the Marshall Avenue bridge when a thunderstorm broke out on Sunday morning, a fire department press release stated. The men were taking photos inside the tunnel, which, as rain began to fall, quickly filled with water and swept the men into the river.
The 29-year-old, Nick Breid, made it to shore and called for the help of nearby boaters. The other man was rescued by emergency crews but later died at a hospital in Minneapolis. He was identified as Ian William Talty, 30, of Woodbury, St. Paul Fire Marshal Steve Zaccard confirmed.
"This was an awful tragedy and we extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the victim," Zaccard said.
Fire department rescue crews and paramedics were called to the scene at 10:19 a.m. Before their arrival a St. Paul Police officer and two University of Saint Thomas students from a rowing club across the river heard Breid's cry for help as he tried to locate Talty.
The group spotted Talty floating in the water, rescued him and brought him to shore. Minneapolis Fire Department EMTs began CPR. St. Paul paramedics continued CPR and other treatment while the victim was taken to the nearby rowing club to an awaiting Hennepin County Medical Center ambulance.
Hennepin County paramedics joined St. Paul paramedics in continuing treatment to Hennepin County Medical Center where the victim died.
Talty, who was an avid amateur photographer and urban explorer was remembered Monday by friends and fellow enthusiasts on several web sites where he shared his photos on urban subjects like graffiti, tunnels and under bridges.
Last updated: Monday, 2:45 p.m.