A Gig Harbor man who drowned Friday night after falling out of a canoe on the Key Peninsula has been identified as 43-year-old Lannie Varns.
During a bonfire in the Lake of the Woods area, Varns got into a canoe with a 46-year-old friend, the friend’s 16-year-old son and Varns’ black Labrador retriever, Pierce County sheriff’s spokesman Ed Troyer said Tuesday.
They’d paddled out about 50 yards when the dog got spooked and jumped into the water.
“Once the dog jumped in the water, the canoe flipped and all three went in the water,” Troyer said.
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The friend and his son, as well as Varns’ dog, swam to shore. They called for Varns but got no response, so they called 911.
Divers responded within an hour and foudnd Varns’ body in 10 feet of water about 20 yards from the shoreline in the 13200 block of 142nd Avenue KPN.
None of the three brought floatation devices on board, Troyer said.
“We believe alcohol was involved,” he added.