Wednesday, Apr 25, 2018
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Boat pilot charged in death of ex-official


From left; James Seney, former Sylvania mayor, and attorney James Tuschman, talk about transportation project. Mr. Seney was killed in a boating accident in June, 2012.

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KENORA, Ontario, Canada -- The fishing guide who was piloting the boat that crashed in June killing former Sylvania Mayor James Seney has been charged with careless operation of a vessel.

Terry Green, 63, of Kenora is scheduled to appear in the Provincial Offences Act Court in Kenora Dec. 13 to answer to the charge, which was filed under the Canada Shipping Act.

Mr. Green was piloting a 17-foot fishing boat on the evening of June 2 when it crashed on Lake of the Woods in northwestern Ontario. His two passengers -- Mr. Seney, 71, and former Toledoan Robert Carmichael Foster, 71, of Frankfort, Mich. -- both were killed.

Investigators said at the time that the boat was found against a four- to five-foot rock wall by a passing fisherman. All three men were on board. Police said it was not known how or why the boat had crashed.

Constable Ronni Grosenick, a spokesman for the Kenora Detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police, declined to say how authorities allege Mr. Green was “careless.”

“We don’t disclose evidence of an offense because it’s still not proven with the court,” she said.

By law, the offense could involve operating a boat at high speeds, swerving to avoid collisions, or otherwise operating a boat without due care and attention for other persons.

Dawn Seney said her family had not received enough information about the case to discuss it. She also has not received a copy of her husband’s death certificate.

“It will be six months this coming Sunday,” Mrs. Seney said. “We are waiting.”

She said her husband, Mr. Foster, and two other friends had been taking a fishing trip in Canada every spring for years.

“There was long-time friendships involved among four of them,” Mrs. Seney said. “Likewise too they kept in touch with each other via email during the year. It was ongoing.”

The owner of the Ash Rapids Lodge and Resort in Kenora where the men had been staying declined to comment on the case or Mr. Green’s employment status saying he had been advised not to discuss the case.

Mr. Seney was mayor of Sylvania from 1978 to 1995 and was vice chairman of the Lucas County Republican Party. Mr. Foster was a longtime executive with the former Toledo Trust Co. before moving to Michigan in 1987 when he became president and chief executive officer of West Michigan Bank & Trust in Frankfort.

- Jennifer Feehan

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