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Canoeist who died in Yorkshire is from Kidderminster
1:38pm Monday 28th January 2013 in News
A canoeist from Kidderminster has died after being rescued from a fast-flowing river in Yorkshire on Sunday.
Matthew Baird-Parker, who was in his 30s, got into difficulties in the River Arkle on the Yorkshire Dales, prompting a major rescue operation.
The man was pulled from the freezing water after he became trapped in debris, mountain rescue volunteers said.
Specially trained firefighters went into the river, which was swollen due to snow melt, and managed to secure a rope to the stricken kayak.
The canoeist was pulled out and taken to hospital by air ambulance.
A spokesman for the Great North Air Ambulance said: " After a search the man was located and pulled from the water.
"We took a doctor and paramedic to the scene who worked on the patient at the scene and throughout the flight to James Cook University Hospital [in Middlesbrough].
"This was a large-scale rescue effort involving police, fire, RAF and Swaledale Mountain Rescue Team. Sadly, despite everyone's best efforts, the man was later pronounced dead. Our thoughts are with his family and friends."
His father Stephen Baird-Parker told the BBC: "Matthew was a very active and committed person and anything he did, he did to his full extent.
"If there was a way you could wish to die, then he would have wanted to die doing this. He was exceptionally good at it and it is all he wanted to do."