Tragedy on Lake Shetek

Up to a dozen boats could be seen patrolling the area of Lake Shetek just to the north of Schreier’s on Shetek Campground on Saturday night after two boats collided. Photo / Per Peterson

Saturday night boat crash kills one, leaves another in critical condition

By Per Peterson

An Adrian man was killed as a result of a crash involving a speed boat and a fishing boat on North Lake Shetek Saturday night.

The body of 22-year-old Logan Nelson was found at 11:38 a.m. Sunday, after a search-and-recovery mission that stretched into the night Saturday after the crash and resumed Sunday. Nelson was thrown from the boat he was a passenger on after it was struck by another vessel.

The crash occurred shortly after 8 p.m. on Saturday (the first call went out at 8:09 p.m.) between Schreier’s on Shetek Campground and Armstrong Slough. Searchers, including numerous civilians, were on site until after midnight Saturday and returned at 5 a.m. Sunday.

A medical helicopter landed on the Schreier property Saturday night to airlift one of the victims to a hospital with severe head wounds.

Joe Schreier, a 38-year member of the Currie Fire Department, was one of the first on the scene Saturday night.

“The sheriff asked some of the people here and they were able to give him information to kind of pinpoint where it had happened, because there’s no way to mark it,” Schreier said. “That helped a lot. Then they used GPS (Sunday) to pin the position.”

The boat that was struck — a 2000 Tige boat operated by Matthew Slater — had just picked someone up from wake boarding when it was hit by a 2018 Tracker boat driven by Brian Bergling, according to the Murray County Sheriff’s Office. Bergling was the lone occupant on his boat.

“Just a very sad, somber feeling (Saturday night),” Marcia Schreier said. “The lake was very busy. It’s early in the season, but I think maybe it’s busier with COVID, and everyone wants to get out, and it was a nice day. There was shock and a lot of tears. It was tough.”

A witness, who spoke Saturday night on the condition of anonymity, said she saw the two boats collide out of the corner of her eye.

“I just heard the “bang,” the person said. “I flagged down a pontoon that was going by and sent him out there. There was a lot of people out there.”

See this week’s Headlight Herald for more on this article.