Missing kayaker, dog found alive - FOX Carolina 21

Missing kayaker, dog found alive

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The missing kayaker Jeff Nichols is treated after being found. (July 16, 2012/FOX Carolina) The missing kayaker Jeff Nichols is treated after being found. (July 16, 2012/FOX Carolina)
The man's Chihuahua is found safe after a search for them. (July 16, 2012/FOX Carolina) The man's Chihuahua is found safe after a search for them. (July 16, 2012/FOX Carolina)
ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -

Rescue crews on Lake Hartwell said a missing kayaker and his dog were found alive late Monday night.

Deputies said the 56-year-old man was kayaking with his pet Chihuahua and appeared to be struggling in the water during a thunderstorm early Monday evening.

Rescue crews were called out to search the lake near Green Pond Road.  They first found the overturned kayak, but couldn't find the man and his dog.

Later in the evening, the man was found on an island.  He was spotted moments before rescuers were going to suspend their search for the night, officials said. 

Rescue teams also realized the missing dog was under the kayak the entire time.  They said he survived in an air pocket under the overturned kayak.

Officials identified the kayaker as Jeff Nichols of Anderson. Officials said Nichols was suffering from exhaustion after capsizing.   

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