The woman who drowned Sunday afternoon in the heavy surf and dangerous riptides in the Atlantic Ocean off Amagansett had been swimming along an unprotected stretch of beach, police said.
Leslie A. Wanek Sgaglione, 45, of Old Brookville, was found unconscious and not breathing by police, town marine patrol officers and town lifeguards who responded to emergency calls about "multiple swimmers in distress" along the beachfront between Atlantic Avenue and Napeague Lane, East Hampton Town police said Monday.
"Upon arrival, responding units found a civilian assisting several swimmers," and Sgaglione was "not breathing upon reaching the shore," police said in a news release.
CPR was administered and "lifesaving efforts were made by responding officers" at the scene but Sgaglione was nonresponsive and was pronounced dead at Southampton Hospital, police said.
Through a friend, the family declined to comment on the death.
Amagansett Fire Chief Mark Bennett told Newsday on Sunday that several swimmers were pulled from the surf after strong rip currents made afternoon swimming treacherous. It wasn't immediately clear if some of those swimmers had entered the surf to try to help Sgaglione or if they had been swimming, as well.
Bennett said an unidentified man was also taken to Southampton Hospital. He survived the incident. Officials said others were treated at the scene and did not require hospitalization.
With Ben Wieder and Matthew Coleman