Harpswell death ruled 'accidental drowning'

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HARPSWELL — The state medical examiner in Augusta has determined the cause of death of Missouri newspaper executive Walter Lage, 66.

Lage died of “accidental drowning” when he slipped or fell from a dock at 14 Whidden Road around 9:30 p.m. after leaving a private boat on Aug. 19. He was visiting Maine for an annual gathering of newspaper executives.

According to the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Department, a friend noticed Lage had fallen into the water and two people jumped into the water to find him, but Lage never resurfaced. The Sheriff’s Department said Lage may have become caught beneath a float, where his body was eventually discovered.

Lage was chief operating officer of Rust Communications of Cape Girardeau, Mo.