More details released about rescue efforts for deceased diver - KXXV Central Texas News Now

More details released about rescue efforts for deceased diver

(Source: Morgan's Point Resort Dive Team) (Source: Morgan's Point Resort Dive Team)

Family, friends and colleagues of the diver who died on Sunday while searching for a missing man on Fort Hood are paying their respects on Friday.

The public visitation is taking place at Harper-Talasek Funeral Home in Temple until 8 p.m. on Friday and from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday.

Pohanka-Kalama, 46, had been part of the volunteer dive team at Morgan's Point Resort for two and a half years.

Morgan's Point Police Chief Fred Churchill remembers her commitment.

"She is more like our team members where they have a love for scuba diving and a desire to serve our community," Churchill said. "She worked up her way to the status, she was an awesome diver and her skill set was tremendous."

Pohanka-Kalama was searching for a missing man at a low water dam on House Creek last Saturday.

Churchill said Pohanka-Kalama had a rope attached to her while conducting the underwater search. Rescue divers were on standby in case something happened.

"It became obvious something was going on down there. The water was 10 to 12 feet deep and the rope got real tight and the person holding the rope or tether could not pull her out," Churchill said.

He added that at that time, the divers went in and found out she had encountered hazardous conditions in the water, which prevented her to get out.

Four divers and about seven men were pulling on the rope to get Pohanka- Kalama out of the water, according to Churchill who didn't release more details because it is a pending investigation.

It took 15 to 20 minutes to conduct the rescue.

Rescue crews performed CPR on Pohanka-Kalama, who was unconscious, when they rescued her and on their way to Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center, Churchill said. 

He said her situation for the mother of two improved there before being transported to Baylor Scott & White Memorial Hospital where she later died.

Churchill affirmed she died from the injuries she sustained, not from drowning. 

"She still had her dive equipment on," Churchill said.

He said her team is still mourning her loss but they continue their commitment to serve the public.

"They're committed to what they do. They showed that Sunday when the got it together again and in less than 12 hours after losing Lori they were back in the water recovering a drowning victim so they can get them back to family and friends," Churchill said.

The investigation surrounding her death, which is being led by Fort Hood is ongoing. Morgan's Point Resort is also investigating.

A public memorial service will be held on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Vista Community Church in Temple. A procession from Harper Talasek Funeral home to the Austin Bergstrom International Airport will leave at 7 a.m. on Sunday. There will be a second memorial service in North Dakota, her home state. 

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