A bet between friends has been blamed for the suspected drowning Friday of a man in his thirties at Baron’s Drive, Soufriere.
It’s the second such incident in Saint Lucia in the past two weeks.
The deceased in the latest one has been identified as Leonard Hippolyte, alias ‘Manu‘ said to be in his thirties.
His older brother, Benjamin Hippolyte told St Lucia Times that he was at work when his sibling died shortly before 4:00 p.m.
“Whilst coming home from work I saw some guys on the sea wall and they told me that my brother took a bet with a next guy – $20 and the other guy sending $40,” Benjamin recalled.
He explained that the challenge was for his brother to swim underwater and reach a boat that was some distance away, before resurfacing for air.
Benjamin said his brother never resurfaced, his dead body being fished out of the sea some time later when others went to his aid after it was realized that he had encountered difficulty.
The deceased, a fisherman by profession, is said to have been a strong swimmer.
But it was reported by Benjamin and others in the community that he had been consuming alcohol before the incident.
He said the wager was between the deceased and a friend.
According to Benjamin, the entire family of the deceased is devastated at the tragedy.
Leonard Hippolyte was the father of a nine-year old boy.
On Christmas Eve Day, a wager involving two men in the fishing village of Canaries led to the suspected drowning of one of them.
According to law enforcement authorities, Robert Joseph, also known as “Jilien”, 52, went swimming near the jetty in Soufriere, encountered difficulty, and died in the water.
It was reported that Joseph undertook to swim to a certain point as a result of a $100 wager with another man.