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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A U.S. National Whitewater Center employee has died from injuries he sustained earlier this week in a near-drowning incident on the Catawba River.

Patrick Halstead passed away at Carolinas Medical Center at 3:15 p.m. today, according to a press release from the Whitewater Center.

Halstead, who was not working at the time of the incident, went in about four feet of water to get his key that fell of a dock around 5:15 p.m on Wednesday.

Friends and co-workers didn't see him until they saw a body floating a few minutes later.

CPR was performed on the man, and paramedics said he was airlifted from the scene in northwest Charlotte to an area trauma center. His injuries were described as life threatening.

Whitewater Center officials said they may send divers down to see if there was something in the water that may have snagged him. The man is an extremely strong swimmer, they added.

The Whitewater Center, which is located by the river, offers whitewater rafting, kayaking and paddle boarding.

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