Man Rescued From Lake Dies

February 16, 2012 Updated Feb 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM EDT

By Lou Chilelli

February 16, 2012 Updated Feb 16, 2012 at 8:49 PM EDT

NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WKBW) -- A frantic call from two young boys to the Niagara Falls Emergency Center Wednesday night, sent rescuers racing to Hyde Park Lake.

Around three o'clock Wednesday afternoon, the two boys had seen a man break through the thin lake ice and go into the water.

City police officers and fire personnel along with Rural Metro Ambulance responded quickly. Within five minutes of receiving the call, they had found the victim and removed him from the frigid lake.

The seventy year old man from Niagara Falls had been walking his three dogs in the park, when one of the dogs ventured onto the ice and broke through. The man headed onto the ice to help the dog...but ended up in the water himself.

Sections of Hyde Park Lake in Niagara Falls are covered with ice...but a mild winter has kept most of it from becoming thick enough to support much weight.

The man was rushed to Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center, where he later died. All of the dogs were out of the water when rescuers arrived.

They are now in the care of the Niagara County SPCA. Officials say 70 year old Pascal Scrufari died from drowning as a result of the incident. Scrufari is the cousin of Brandy Scrufari, who heads up the board of directors at the Niagara County SPCA.