Indiana Hunters’ Boat Sinks, Avoid Serious Trouble with Help of Floating Decoys

by Michael Freeman

Hunters are some of the most passionate people you’ll ever meet, but sometimes that enthusiasm can get them into trouble. In the case of two Indiana hunters, while coming back to shore after hunting waterfowl, their boat sank. Luckily, the pair averted mortal danger thanks to their floating decoys.

Trenton Stackhouse of Milford and Darick Stiles of Warsaw Indiana soon found themselves in trouble after deciding to hunt waterfowl. Realizing the freezing temperature and 50 mile per hour winds were too much, the pair decided to head back. However, while gathering their decoys the situation soon turned disastrous as large waves overtook them and caused the boat to sink. After failing to put on their lifejackets, the two found aid in an unlikely place: the waterfowl decoys and a gun case.

Those two items turned out to be exactly what the two hunters needed, allowing them to swim several hundred yards to shore. Unfortunately, Stackhouse became unresponsive at the time due to severe hypothermia. Stiles had his back though and entered an unoccupied home to find shelter and save Stackhouse. Though no one was there, the home featured an alarm, which alerted the police. They arrived shortly afterward and took Stackhouse to the hospital for treatment. As of now, the incident is still under investigation.

WANE 15 covered the story and spoke to Indiana Conservation Officers about the incident. The officers reminded the public it’s actually Indiana law that life jackets be readily available and in good condition while on boats. Additionally, anyone taking to the water needs to plan for any kind of inclement weather or dangerous hazards.

From Indiana Hunters to Indiana Horses

The pair of Indiana hunters aren’t the only ones to have a close encounter with icy water lately. In the same state, authorities rescued a horse trapped in freezing water and had been there for hours.

Indiana fire departments helped the Tennessee walking horse named Lola after she became trapped in a frozen creek last week. Lola’s owners noticed she didn’t come back with her pasture mates for breakfast and became concerned. Following the fenceline of their home, they were horrified to discover she was submerged in a nearby creek bed. They called both the Sugar Creek Township and Buck Creek Township fire departments to help, along with Skillman Veterinary Services. The latter detailed the happening in a long Facebook post.

“Both of the fire depts were able to physically move her 1000 pound body out of the creek on to dryer land. When Dr. Skillman arrived Lola was shaking violently trying to conserve the heat left in her body,” part of the post read. Fortunately, after hooking up an IV and getting her temperature to climb to the normal range, Lola pulled through.

Though she isn’t out of the woods yet, Skillman is hopeful she will pull through.