Father drowns trying to rescue girl swept to California bay

(Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)

A father drowned after trying to rescue his 12-year-old daughter who was on a raft that was swept from a Northern California lagoon out to sea, authorities said.

Paul Lewis, 53, of Marina, died Tuesday, authorities said.

The raft got caught in the river current at Carmel River State Beach on Tuesday and was pushed into the chilly waters of Carmel Bay, rescuers with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said.

The girl fell off the raft and her father tried to get to her, CalFire spokesman George Nunez told KSBW-TV.

First responders located the girl in the water and took her to the the hospital for treatment of hypothermia. Lewis was located by a Coast Guard helicopter and was brought to shore by a fire boat. He was taken to the hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Rescuers told the station the girl likely survived because she was wearing a wet suit.