Overboard kayaker rescued from Smithtown Bay

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A 23-year-old man whose kayak began taking on water was rescued from Smithtown Bay on Sunday evening after police were alerted to his plight by a bird-watcher.

The kayaker was identified by Suffolk County police only as a resident of Smithtown. He was taken to St. Catherine of Sienna Medical Center in Smithtown for treatment of hypothermia, police said.

Police said the kayaker was about 300 yards offshore when his craft began taking on water at about 6:50 p.m. The man fell into the water, but was able to hang onto the kayak, police said. A witness, who also was not identified, saw the incident while bird watching from the Kings Park bluff and called 911.

Responding Fourth Precinct officers Terence Corrigan and Martin Lauter located the witness and, with their assistance, a police helicopter and a rescue boat from the Kings Park Fire Department were able to locate the kayaker, police said.

Fire department responders Greg Smith, Dan Hagstrom and Andrew Strain were able to pull the man from the water -- and then transport him to St. Catherine.

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