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Aug 4, 2015 12:45 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

Brooklyn Man Dies After Being Pulled From Surf At Rogers Beach On Saturday

Aug 5, 2015 3:53 PM

A 23-year-old Brooklyn man—a healthy young father, and a strong swimmer, according to a family member—died after suffering some sort of medical event in the surf off Rogers Beach in Westhampton Beach on Saturday afternoon.

Jordan Boris, who was at the beach with his parents, who are regular summer visitors to Westhampton, was swimming 20 to 25 yards from shore at around 1:40 p.m. when witnesses said he appeared to be struggling; some witnesses speculated that he might have been caught in a rip current, and some said he appeared to have a seizure.

Four lifeguards equipped with ropes and flotation devices were able to reach Mr. Boris and pull him from the ocean. After checking his vitals, they began performing CPR, according to Thomas Abbatiello, the head lifeguard at Rogers Beach, who assisted with the rescue.

After recognizing that Mr. Boris was suffering some sort of cardiac distress, lifeguards called for an automated external defibrillator, or AED, from the beach manager, Shaun Johnson. The device, which is stored at the beach pavilion, is designed to automatically deliver a shock when a patient is suffering certain types of cardiac events, such as arrhythmia, but not to deliver a shock in instances where it would not be beneficial. When used on Mr. Boris, the device did not deliver a shock, according to both Mr. Johnson and Mr. Abbatiello.

Westhampton Beach Village Police officers arrived several minutes later and took over CPR from the lifeguards. Officers then affixed their own AED to Mr. Boris, but it also did not deliver a shock, according to Mr. Johnson.

Several witnesses said a crew with the Westhampton War Memorial Ambulance arrived between 20 and 30 minutes after Mr. Boris was pulled from the water, with some questioning the reason for the delayed response.

Albert Tudisco, the chief of the ambulance company, could not be immediately reached this week, and Westhampton Beach Village Police Chief Trevor Gonce said the emergency call was not handled by the village dispatcher and, therefore, he could not provide response times.

It appears that the call was automatically forwarded to Suffolk County Fire, Rescue and Emergency Services in Yaphank; a Freedom of Information Act request seeking the response times of paramedics was filed with the office on Wednesday, but official response times were not immediately available.

Village Police stated that Mr. Boris, who was at the beach with his parents, Roberta and Harris Boris of Roslyn, had gone into cardiac arrest, though it remains unclear if that occurred before or after he was pulled from the ocean.

Mr. Boris was transported by the Westhampton War Memorial Ambulance to Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead, where he was pronounced dead, authorities said.

Lisa Boris, Mr. Boris’s sister, said Monday that her parents, who have a weekend house in Westhampton, watched the entire situation unfold before their eyes. “It’s so hard to think about,” she said. “I don’t know how my parents are going to get through it.”

Debra Treto of Center Moriches, who grew up in Westhampton Beach, said she and her family watched as the lifeguards pulled Mr. Boris from the water and began performing CPR. They also noticed his parents nearby.

“I felt so bad. I could tell it was the mom and dad there watching their son pass away,” she said.

Ms. Boris, who lives in Great Neck, said her brother had not been diagnosed with any preexisting cardiac issues. She also described him as a strong swimmer, noting that he had been a rescue diver for several years. He worked for his father at Regal Cleaning, a post-construction cleaning company based in Port Washington.

His sister also said Mr. Boris leaves behind a 2-year-old daughter, Faith Boris. His daughter was not at Rogers Beach on Saturday, she said.

The ocean was particularly rough on Saturday, with strong rip currents being reported across the South Shore, and 4-foot swells spotted in Westhampton Beach, according to Mr. Abbatiello. In fact, about an hour later, in Hampton Bays, a beachgoer rescued a woman who had been pulled out by a rip current near the Shinnecock Inlet.

At Rogers Beach on Saturday, red flags marking the lifeguard-protected zone had white ropes tied to them, signaling to swimmers that the water was rough. There were also signs on both the deck and walkway leading to the beach warning swimmers to be aware of dangerous rip currents.

Due to these conditions, Mr. Abbatiello said he stationed two lifeguards at each flag on both ends of the swim zone to make sure swimmers stayed within the boundaries. One of the lifeguards spotted Mr. Boris and blew a whistle after recognizing that he had strayed too far from shore, though he was still within the protected area, according to Mr. Abbatiello.

Mr. Boris then began swimming toward the shore but almost immediately began to look like he was in distress, and the lifeguards went in to pull him out.

“I thought our lifeguards and staff did an excellent job handling the situation,” Mr. Abbatiello said.

“The lifeguards did a good job,” Ms. Treto agreed. “They did everything right.”

Alison Cohen of Staten Island, a registered respiratory therapist employed with the Staten Island University Hospital, said she witnessed the ordeal and was part of the ongoing CPR rotation prior to officers arriving. She noted that two physicians who happened to be on the beach also volunteered their help.

“Everyone did the best they could do, given the resources they had,” said Ms. Cohen, who also wrote a letter to the editor published in this week’s edition of The Press criticizing the lack of emergency equipment that was available to lifeguards.

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I witnessed the drowning at Rogers Beach. It took more than 20 minutes for paramedics to show. When the EMT showed up, he was unfit to travel down to the shore effectively. The man had to be close to 400 pounds. I don't want to offend anyone. but aren't there any standards? Why wasn't this man airlifted? Why aren't there emergency 4x4 vehicles to transport injured beach goers? I will forever see this man dying and so will my children. There has got to be a better plan put in place for these types ...more
By odebndan (2), eastmoriches on Aug 2, 15 6:15 AM
As a witness, you were there and had an opportunity to make a difference. I agree with squeaky that you seem to be constructively critical and upset, but do you know CPR? Are you a capable swimmer? Is there anything which prevents you from volunteering or learning a basic skill set which could save lives? Did you know that the most effective treatment for drowning is preventing it in it's entirety? Should we issue AEDs to lifeguards?

I'm quite confident that the lifeguards did their ...more
By Mr. Z (9163), North Sea on Aug 2, 15 7:40 AM
Thank you for sharing. I also witnessed the incident. Very upsetting. I commend all the lifeguards for every effort, and even the police officer and emt that eventually arrived after 20 min. My condolences to his family.
A comment by one of the emt was, WE WERE AT CUPSOGUE! dO WE ONLY HAVE OE AMBULANCE IN WESTHAMPTON BEACH! I KNOW WE HAVE MANY EMT IN OUR VILLAGE.......can our villages and towns be prepared for our wonderful visitors? Your correct as to why our village does not have a 4 x 4 ...more
By harlee24 (7), southampton on Aug 2, 15 9:58 AM
The man was not airlifted because Suffolk County Police Helicopters will not fly patients in cardiac arrest.
By localyokal (1), Southampton on Aug 2, 15 11:16 AM
2 members liked this comment
Perhaps you should have had your children walk away instead of watch a man die...especially after you were told to back away because there was nothing you could do. And if you're as trained as you clai to be, why don't you volunteer and become part of a solution rather than fuel a nasty mean spirited fire. How dare you attack the volunteers?! And FYI-you cannot airlift someone in cardiac arrest...you can't shock while flying. Educate yourself before posting ignorant comments.
By S'hamptonNative (72), Southampton on Aug 3, 15 9:14 PM
3 members liked this comment
I know you didn't mean to sound critical, I really get it. We are at a critical point when it comes to volunteers for EMS and local Fire Dept. I'm not sure if younger people leaving in droves is what's keeping our services so hard to staff. When a call goes out and no one can answer the call keeps going out. Then if still no one can go a call for mutual aid to another dept will go out. What's important is maybe if we cant be a volunteer, we can all learn CPR and give the victim a chance. Hopefully ...more
By squeaky (286), hampton bays on Aug 2, 15 6:44 AM
1 member liked this comment
I think you're spot on. In addition to having a lack of a younger talent pool, most people also have to work sixty or better hour weeks just to pay the rent or mortgage, and cover life's other normal expenses. It's hard to respond to an alarm if you're working and not in the district. And, I wholly agree with your point of view about the community at large and their skill set. Additionally, we know what salt water does to alveoli, but most people probably don't...
By Mr. Z (9163), North Sea on Aug 2, 15 7:13 AM
I witnessed the situation with the drowning also and do know CPR . The life guards on the beach were the first responders. CPR was started immediately what made no sense was no AED was available and the victim had to wait until a police officer arrived. Upon leaving the beach I saw a sign that an AED was in the office when you enter the facility. Why was is not available? Had I seen the sign upon going in I would have ran up there and brought it to the life guards.
This blunder may have ...more
By Bigb (2), Westhampton beach on Aug 2, 15 8:05 AM
3 members liked this comment
If there was an AED available at the office, the lifeguards should have known about it and sent for it immediately.
By Crabby (63), Southampton on Aug 2, 15 1:02 PM
Mr. Z., Yes, I do in fact know CPR and I am also trained to use an AED. UNFORTUNETLY, one was not available. I tried to make my self available to aid in CPR rotation. I was told to step back. So instead of helping the victim of the rough sea, I offered a drink to his helpless and in shock mother.

Whining, I think not!! As big b states... It was a blunder. It was very sad and frustrating to watch unfold!!!


By odebndan (2), eastmoriches on Aug 2, 15 9:18 AM
3 members liked this comment
So, do we know why this person was in distress? Was it a medical event? Did they have a seizure, stroke, or cardiac episode? Were they not a strong swimmer or did this person's body cramp up? Was this person caught in a rip?

Did you note the location of an AED when you arrived at the beach if you are so adequately trained?

If you want solutions, they cost taxpayer money. Having an EMT staffed alongside lifeguards is one solution. Having an AED at each lifeguard chair within ...more
Aug 2, 15 10:13 AM appended by Mr. Z
And, by at least one account here there allegedly is an AED at Rogers Beach.
By Mr. Z (9163), North Sea on Aug 2, 15 10:13 AM
No AED was available? Apparently two different units were on hand, and official reports seem to discredit you and your posts.

It seems everything was done for this young man that could be done at the scene. His lungs may have simply been too damaged by any water his lungs took in. No pulmonary surfactant, means no respiration.
By Mr. Z (9163), North Sea on Aug 2, 15 3:26 PM
1 member liked this comment
I was a witness to the entire thing and I dont know where y'all were but one of the lifeguards ran and got the AED and used it on the victim as it was advised. It seemed as if the AED was not advised and CPR was administered by several lifeguards. When the paramedics arrived they then swapped out the lifeguard AED for their AED. It is mandatory for beaches to have AED machines and the lifeguards are trained for this as well. Before you jump to conclusions, you should learn and pay attention what ...more
By Haydenpat (1), Westhampton Beach on Aug 2, 15 6:07 PM
Jordan's sister here again. I can confirm from my mother that everything possible was done in an attempt to save Jordan. Two AEDs, cpr, and he was intubated. I am wondering get who spotted him though, and thank the people who tried to comfort my parents.
By IlisaBoris (2), on Aug 2, 15 9:14 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By lirider (159), Westhampton Beach on Aug 2, 15 12:40 PM
I am the victims sister. His name was Jordan, he was 23. I was not there but my parents where, they saw it all. It's a huge shock for us, Jordan was a very strong swimmer, he was also a certified rescue diver. He was an amazing person and a father, with so much ahead of him. Our hearts are broken.
By IlisaBoris (2), on Aug 2, 15 1:36 PM
2 members liked this comment
I am so very sorry for your loss. I just want you to know that you and your family are in my prayers. Jordan sounds like a wonderful brother, person, and son.
By LI native (125), east moriches on Aug 2, 15 2:00 PM
2 members liked this comment
From our family to yours, you have our deepest sympathies.

It sounds like he was a great person, and that the world will be a bit more empty without him...
By Mr. Z (9163), North Sea on Aug 2, 15 3:30 PM
1 member liked this comment
to llisaBoris:

I am so sorry for your loss. How is it that a strong swimmer can drown on an unremarkable day? I hope that you will be provided with some answers before this incident is over.
By highhatsize (3290), East Quogue on Aug 2, 15 7:51 PM
1 member liked this comment
I am very sorry for your and your family's terrible loss. Your brother has been in my thoughts all day long.
By Crabby (63), Southampton on Aug 2, 15 9:02 PM
So sorry for your loss. I am sure Jordan was full of life. Yes, the lifeguards did a fantastic job with all the extreme efforts of cpr.
I am concerned with the amount of time it took for the ambulance to arrive. I know there were many calls for the same situation, dangerous rip currents, water rescues, at about the same time. I have no idea how many other emergency calls they(our ambulance)
had at the time or how they dispatch, but it did take 20 min. Can we safely or how can we safely ...more
By harlee24 (7), southampton on Aug 3, 15 8:13 AM
I am so sorry about the loss of your brother..my condolences to you and your entire family... and so sorry your parents had to witness it.
By sandydog21 (181), Southampton on Aug 3, 15 10:04 AM
My condolences to you and your family. I pray that G-D watches over his child / children. I am very sorry this happened to your family.
By Summer Resident (192), Southampton N.Y. on Aug 4, 15 12:15 AM
I am so sorry for your loss. I will keep you, your family and your niece in my prayers.
By kathrb (15), Southampton on Aug 5, 15 3:58 PM
My heart goes out to you and your family and of course Jordan's wife and little daughter. My stepson died in the ocean and was also a very strong and experienced swimmer. It is tragic and sad and I send my prayers to you all.
By MarionGreene (1), on Aug 6, 15 2:06 PM
Llisa I am also very so sorry for your loss and will keep you and your family in my prayers.
By joe hampton (2834), southampton on Aug 12, 15 11:16 PM
Ilisa, I am sorry that you have lost your brother. What a terrible tragedy, my heart goes out to you and your family. No one should have to lose such a young person. I wish you all peace and love.
By TheWaterMillian (30), Water Mill on Aug 2, 15 2:00 PM
2 members liked this comment

Yea Lirider...
What was your point..
You seriously thought folks would read of this tragedy and develop more compassion for a grieving family and community caregivers witnessing a loved one die?
Your characterizations of those at the scene(where you were not) sickens me.
Your tabloid assessment is nothing more than "bomb throwing" from a so called 40 year source...
Read between the lines the sister wrote and feel her pain...how much your knowledgable insights must have comforted ...more
By kahuna (52), Tampa on Aug 2, 15 3:03 PM
1 member liked this comment
Lisa I too am sorry for the loss of your brother.
By Bigb (2), Westhampton beach on Aug 2, 15 4:31 PM
Don't worry Z knows exactly what happened even though he wasn't there. I
By nazznazz (261), east hampton on Aug 2, 15 7:49 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By officegals (4), westhampton beach on Aug 2, 15 11:09 PM
1 member liked this comment
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By CaptainSig (636), Dutch Harbor on Aug 3, 15 7:11 AM
Condolences to Lisa's family for your loss.

It might be helpful for everyone to realize that this article was updated once or twice yesterday, and that the initial reporting did not indicate the use of the AED units (probably because the authorities had not yet told the Press about this).

Please re-read the entire article again -- carefully . . .


When the Press is (understandably) unable to have a reporter at the scene of every tragic event like this, the paper relies ...more
By PBR (4801), Southampton on Aug 3, 15 4:55 AM
PS -- It is likely that the article will be updated further, and that a new "Print Edition" of the article will contain much more complete information over the next day or two, to be published in the Western Edition of the Press on Thursday.

Again, reader patience would go a long way, in helping Jordan's family cope with this huge loss . . .
By PBR (4801), Southampton on Aug 3, 15 5:01 AM
I was sitting next to the man who was pulled from the water on Sat. My husband and I were in shock that after 20 minutes not one ambulance or paramedic team came - one cop literally strolled down the beach, as he was over 270 pounds and had a hard time walking to him. This man may have been saved had it not been for the horrific response time. So sad!!!! Im sure the entire beach was appalled. Where are the vehicles on the beach with a team of paramedic? The life guards did a great job and the rest ...more
By ValerieBlasi (1), on Aug 3, 15 4:21 PM
FYI the article has been updated with many additional details. [See the blue link at the top for the Print version.]

Condolences to Jordan's family for your sudden and tragic loss.
By PBR (4801), Southampton on Aug 4, 15 4:31 PM
As a mother and a Sh native my thoughts are so jumbled after reading all these posts. Sure things happened that never should have. First, for the summer people who were witnesses I suggest you hold your thoughts private instead of fueling the fire.
This is a local problem concerning staff and implements stored at the beach. it is very sad to see the way my hometown is evolving.

By summertime (589), summerfield fl on Aug 6, 15 10:10 AM
I love all these comments stating that it took 20 - 30 minutes for the first responder and/or ambulance to arrive and yet a new article on 27east (http://www.27east.com/news/article.cfm/Westhampton-Beach-Surrounding-Areas/118020/Ambulance-Chief-Defends-Crew-In-Wake-Of-Death-At-Rogers-Beach-In-Westhampton-Beach) states the first-responder arrived 7 minutes after the call was received by EMS and the ambulance arrived 13 minutes after the call was received. Of course, had the press done their research ...more
By Rich Morey (291), East Hampton on Aug 12, 15 9:24 AM
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