Michigan man drowns participating in Escape from Ft. DeSoto Triathlon

FORT DESOTO, Fla. - An event meant for physical endurance has ended in tragedy.

Pinellas County Sheriff's officials say Donald Bautel, 64, died Saturday morning while participating in the Escape from Fort DeSoto triathlon.

He was visiting Florida  from Michigan to participate ion the event.

According to reports, Bautel appeared to be drowning during the first portion of the race, the half mile swim. Other athlete's participating noticed him struggling and pulled him from the water and began CPR and called 911.

He was taken to a local hospital where he passed.

Deputies believe the drowning was accidental and could have been caused by a health related issue.

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