Ottawa, KS boat disaster, June 1978
WIND TIPS EXCURSION BOAT, 2 DIE
Ottawa, Kan. - The Whippoorwill, a small excursion boat with 59 passengers and crewmen aboard, was capsized Saturday night on Lake Pomona by what authorities suspected was a tornado.
Two persons were known dead, and eight were missing. Fourteen were injured.
Some were believed trapped under the boat.
A Kansas Highway Patrol spokesman said the wind was generated by a severe thunderstorm and could have been "a tornado or a strong straight wind."
One witness said the rear paddle wheel type boat was about 15 minutes into its cruise when passengers onticed a funnel on the lake. The boat began to head back to shore but tipped over. Rescue workers were attempting to tow the overturned craft back to shore.
The Milwaukee Journal, Milwaukee, WI 18 June, 1978