Family mourns loss of father who drowned in Durham - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Family mourns loss of father who drowned in Durham

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Moments before he went missing, family told Eyewitness News that husband and father, Ramiro Bonilla was playing with his 1-year-old daughter in the water. (WFSB) Moments before he went missing, family told Eyewitness News that husband and father, Ramiro Bonilla was playing with his 1-year-old daughter in the water. (WFSB)
State police said a 33-year-old man drowned this afternoon at Miller’s Pond State Park in Durham. (WFSB) State police said a 33-year-old man drowned this afternoon at Miller’s Pond State Park in Durham. (WFSB)
(WFSB file photo) (WFSB file photo)
DURHAM, CT (WFSB) -

Crews recovered the body of a 33-year-old New York man from Miller’s Pond State Park in Durham on Saturday evening an hour and a half after he went missing.

Moments before he went missing, family told Eyewitness News that husband and father, Ramiro Bonilla was playing with his 1-year-old daughter in the water.

Friends and family told Eyewitness News that Bonilla, his wife, and daughter were visiting family over the weekend.

 "They decided to come here to swim for the kids to have fun, and I guess he was with his daughter for a while swimming, and then he decided to drop his daughter off and go for a couple laps and swim,” described family friend, Alex Tapia.

“On his way back from his second lap, he just raised his hands trying to ask for help and then he just went down and that's the last time they saw him,” said Tapia.

State Police said there were no indications that drugs or alcohol were a factor, and Bonilla did not have a medical problem.

“By all indications, he was a really good swimmer. He had been swimming in the water for several minutes and at one point, he just came up over the surface looked at his family, exclaimed help and then disappeared underneath the surface of the water,” said Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, Sergeant Chris Dwyer.

Rescue crews and dive teams from Middletown, Haddam, and Durham, along with the Connecticut State Police dive teams, assisted in the search for Bonilla’s body.

DEEP and Police stress to visitors that while Miller’s Pond State Park is a popular location, but urge caution to those who choose to swim there.

“This pond here does have a current to it, a lot of people don't realize that and we unfortunately have probably one to two incidents here a year of someone who drowns here,” added Sergeant Dwyer.

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