UPDATE: Police identify Merrill man who drowned - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Police identify Merrill man who drowned after helping daughter

Police say a heroic situation turned deadly for a Merrill man. Investigators say 42-year-old Xavier Patton died after helping his daughter in the water.

Now, the Merrill family has lost its father and husband. A difficult situation for everyone involved.

"Anytime a tragic event takes place it sticks with us," Lt. Tim Fischer of the Lincoln County Sheriff's Department said. "This wasn't something you could just walk away and look at it as just another call."

Authorities say Patton was swimming with family members at Pine Cone Ranch Resort in the town of Bradley.

"His daughter was having some trouble so he was trying to help her," Lt. Fischer explained. "While that was going on he started to flail in the water."

That's when officers say a family member pulled Patton out of the water and started to perform CPR. Patton was taken to the hospital, where he died.

But what caused him to go under water? Authorities say they don't know and hope an autopsy will shed some light.

But, what they do know... "Anytime someone tries to help someone else they are a hero. Patton's family member who tried to save him is a hero. Unfortunately this just ended tragically," Lt. Fischer said.

Officers say autopsy results might not be available for several weeks.

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