Virginia City resident dies in swimming accident

A 41-year-old Virginia City resident drowned in the water-filled Flowery Mine pit Friday afternoon.

Roger Dorey jumped from a rocky outcropping into a water-filled mine pit about 1:30 p.m. Witnesses, primarily friends and family, said he was trying to hit the water feet first, but apparently landed on his side. He never resurfaced.

"There is no cell phone coverage in the area and members of the party had to hike out to summon help," said Storey County Sheriff Pat Whitten. "It was about 2-1/2 hours, from the time we were called until the body was recovered."

Members of the Storey County Fire Department, Storey County Sheriff's Office and Washoe County Hasty Search and Rescue responded to the call. Dorey's body was found at a depth of 30 feet and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

"It's a tragic accident, but we want to underscore the dangers of swimming in and around abandoned or decommissioned mines," Whitten said. "This one is on private property and it's simply not safe."

He said there were no obvious abrasions to the body that would indicate any kind of trauma. A complete autopsy is scheduled for early next week.

Dorey's body was taken to Walton's funeral home. He is survived by his wife, Deena, and family. Friday was his 41st birthday.


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