Victim of apparent drowning honored years ago for saving another man

CREATED Oct. 22, 2013

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RACINE - The man whose body was pulled from the Reefpoint Marina on Sunday apparently saved another man from drowning a few years before.

The man, identified as 58-year-old Richard Franzese of Hoffman States, Ill., was honored in 2005 for saving an elderly man in the Root River, according to the Racine Journal Times. The victim recovered, and Racine honored Franzese with the Citizen Lifesaving Award.

His brother said he was packing up his boat for the winter when he went missing. Police received the missing person report around 8 p.m. Sunday, and found Franzese less than an hour later.

“This is an unfortunate and terrible tragedy,” Sheriff Christopher Schmaling said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Franzese family.”