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Two Men and Young Boy Survive Icy Plunge in China Lake

Benton(WGME) -- Two men and a young boy endured a frightening experience on what was supposed to be a day of fun.

"I went under. I went under like 3 times," remembers 25 year-old Lucas Cole of Benton.

It was supposed to be an ice fishing trip and Lucas Cole's first time on China Lake. Now he calls it his first near death experience

"I was in the water for like 4 or 5 minutes," says Cole.

Cole, his friend, and his friend's nephew were all riding on an ATV following a snowmobile path on China Lake about 8 o'clock this morning. These are pictures sent to us from the Maine Warden Service of where it happened. Cole says they were riding along when things went very wrong. They hit some thin ice. Their weight proved to be too much and they plunged through the ice into frigid water.

Cole remembers scrambling for his life,only to get nowhere."Every time I tried to grab something the ice break and I go back under."

Cole says his friend his friend's nephew managed to get out first and were finally able to help get him out as well. Both men had hypothermia and Cole has a frost bitten finger. His friend's nephew is fine. Tonight Cole says he's sore and tired but lucky to be alive at home with his family.

"My kids were the only thing I was thinking of and just thankful I was able to come home to them," said Cole as he kissed his young son on the head.

He says if there's one thing he takes away from today it's to get to know an area before you go out there and always check the ice.