SACRED HEART, Minn. (WCCO) — A woman is dead after her kayak overturned in the Hawk Creek near Sacred Heart, Minn.

The Renville County Sheriff’s Office said Diane Bigler-Hagenow likely died from drowning Saturday evening.

Officer were called to an area of Hawk Creek just after 6 p.m. after it was reported that Bigler-Hagenow went missing underwater.

The four people who had been kayaking with her were near the area where incident happened when officer arrived. They weren’t injured.

After an extensive search, officers found Bigler-Hagenow’s body in the creek.

They said she was wearing a personal flotation device at the time her kayak overturned.

The Renville County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate.

Comments (11)
  1. Joe says:

    My condolences to the family.

    Kayaking is dangerous. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you can easily turn over in the water, panic and drown. People need more information about this sport.

    1. Fran says:

      I am very saddened to hear about the loss to the Bigler-Hagenow families. Diane was a wonder woman and she will be missed by all her knew her.
      Diane also was a very athletic woman but sometimes regardless how competent we may be at a sport, accidents do happen, so to say that someone is naive or stupid is not acceptable when a life has been lost.
      Please keep this family in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

    2. Lynda Black-Smith says:

      She was an experienced Kayaker — and to assume that she wasn’t and comment in such a manner is extremely disrespectful. What’s your problem Joe?

  2. Callie's Mom says:

    “dislike” Jake, How can you assume she had no experience?

    1. Jake says:

      If she had experience, then how did she drown? Didn’t know how to flip up, or exit the kayak? Or didn’t know how to swim? Hint: I have been certified twice to be a Red Cross lifeguard.

      1. Friend of the family says:

        Unfotunately according to coverage by another report, her husband said that he threw a rope out to her and was able to get one of her arms, but her body was pinned and they were unable to get her above water. They have kayaked many many time…this was a terrible accident and not due to lack of competency.

      2. Lynda Black-Smith says:

        Snags, and branches under water have caused such accidents before to the most experienced kayakers and sometimes with the swiftness of the water and the rocks underneath being craggy, rather than smooth — people can get caught. You need to check your information before placing such judgment. Certified Red Cross lifeguards I know are aware of such things happening — and would never hurt the feelings of survivors with such thoughtless comment.

        1. Marcellus Wallace says:

          I didn’t find his comment to be “thoughtless” or “disrespectful.”

          We don’t know yet the details on what caused this fatal accident, but typically kayaking fatalities are due to the causes mentioned above.

          I’m not sure how someone becomes pinned underwater, but I do know that people don’t survive long being in that position. Very sad situation indeed. I hope for healing for the family. There are never any good enough answers for those left behind…

      3. Mark says:

        Getting caught in branches underwater has killed experienced kayakers and canoeists, and I know of one who had a heart attack on the river.

  3. M.R. says:

    Just canoed a stretch of the Cloquet River in Brimson, MN. Water was high after rains and really going good. We were an experienced crew, but still had some tense moments with long tree “sweepers” that presented some serious challenges and potential capsizing.
    Water sports can give us surprises no matter what our skill level. My condolences to Dianes’ family. I didn’t know her, but I understand what it is like to lose a loved one. I also know what it is like to be on the water and get a big surprise you might not be able to handle. Fast, deep water should keep us all humble.