2 SCUBA Divers Die at Point Lobos near Monterey
SAN JOSE — Two scuba divers who died in the waters off Monterey County on Friday have been identified as Volodymyr and Marina Butsky, a husband and wife who lived at a condominium complex in the foothills of East San Jose.
The couple was diving off the Point Lobos State Reserve when one of their daughters alerted authorities that they were overdue around 2:45 p.m.
Eric Abma of the state Parks and Recreation Department told The Associated Press that rescue crews arrived to find Marina Butsky, 41, had been pulled out of the water by two other divers who found her facedown in the water. Her 40-year-old husband was recovered by firefighters. While CPR was performed on both, they were pronounced dead after being taken to the hospital.
According to a family website, the couple married in 1990 after growing up “in a charming city in Ukraine by the name of Poltava.”
Volodymyr wrote that they got married young despite acquaintances wondering if they knew what they were doing.
“Though we did not mind — we were mature enough (as we thought) and we did not care what they said,” he wrote. “We already knew each other for almost four years and spent a lot of time together even before we started dating.”
They both graduated from Poltava State Technical University in the Ukraine and have two daughters who were born before they came to the United States in 1999 when the economy in their native land tanked.
Volodymyr worked as a software engineer, first in Portland, Oregon, and later in Silicon Valley. He writes that his latest post was at “a small but proud company MetaIntegration.”
They have two daughters, one of whom graduated from Valley Christian High School in San Jose and is studying astrophysics at California Institute of Technology.
Family members who gathered at the couple’s Buena Vista Court home on Monday declined to comment about the pair. Neighbors described them as friendly, and said Marina Butsky was on the board of the complex’s homeowners association.
“She was really active in the community,” said Diana Valverde, who lives in an adjoining unit. “She always said ‘hi’ to everyone, she was just a really good-hearted person.”
According to Volodymyr’s website, “In recent years we picked up a couple of new and exciting activities: shooting sports and scuba diving. We like both of them and now have to share our free time between camping trips, backpacking, trips to shooting ranges and ocean diving.”
The cause of death has not been determined and the incident remains under investigation.
Two scuba divers have died while diving off the coast of California’s Monterey County, authorities said. Emergency crews were sent to Point Lobos State Natural Reserve around 2:45 p.m. CPR was also performed on that person, but both divers were pronounced dead after being taken to a hospital, officials said.
Two scuba divers have died while diving off the coast of California’s Monterey County, authorities said.
Emergency crews were sent to Point Lobos State Natural Reserve around 2:45 p.m. Friday where they found lifeguards performing CPR on one of the divers, said state Department of Forestry and Fire Protection spokesman Daniel Berlant.
Lifeguards and firefighters used a boat to get to second diver floating just offshore.
“At that point, we got in a boat with State Parks lifeguards and located the second victim floating in the water about 50 feet from the rocks,” Capt. Carlos Aguilera of the Carmel Highlands Fire Department told The Monterey County Herald.
CPR was also performed on that person, but both divers were pronounced dead after being taken to a hospital, officials said.
The names, additional details about the victims and what killed them have not been released, but authorities said one was a male and one was a female.
The reserve where the divers died is a popular diving area about four miles south of Carmel, or about 90 miles south of San Francisco.
The offshore area forms one of the richest underwater habitats in the world, with wildlife that includes seals, sea lions, sea otters and migrating gray whales, according to the state Parks and Recreation Department website, the agency that operates the reserve.
Proof of certification is required, and diving is permitted only at two coves within the park, including Whalers Cove, the area where the two stricken divers were found, the website said.
Parks officials did not immediately return calls to The Associated Press seeking details of the incident.