Man, 67, Presumed Dead After Falling in Ocean While Attempting Jump Across Inlet on Oregon Coast

Despite the efforts of his bystanders, Steve Allen, 67, was unable to be rescued after he lost his footing and fell into the ocean

Waves crashing into the rocks at Devils Churn along the Oregon Coast, USA
Photo: Edwin Remsburg/VW Pics via Getty

A 67-year-old man is presumed dead after he fell into the ocean after attempting to jump across a narrow inlet located along the Oregon coastline.

According to the Oregon State Police, Steve Allen of Walnut Creek, Calif., was visiting Siuslaw National Forest on Thursday when he attempted to jump across Devils Churn, a popular destination due to its views.

But police say Allen fell into the waters, leading to unsuccessful attempts by witnesses to save him.

"It looks like you can jump across, but the other side is steep and slick," witness Andy Nelson told YachatsNews. "He just missed his footing and fell back into the water."

Rescue agencies who spotted Allen before he vanished into the ocean said he appeared unresponsive.

The United States Coast Guard and other rescue groups called off their search for Allen later that evening, believing he was dead, police said.

Waves crashing into the rocks at Devils Churn along the Oregon Coast, USA
Edwin Remsburg/VW Pics via Getty

Nelson told YachatsNews that he and other bystanders crafted a rescue rope made of belts, a dog leash and shirts, and Allen was able to hold on to it for a few minutes before he fell out of sight.

"It was cold … he was struggling," Nelson told the outlet. "And then it became hard for him to hold on. Then he let go. It was too late."

"It was a really incredible effort to try to save him," he added. "There was no way to get him out of there. We just couldn't do it."

Nelson said witnesses at the park did their best to comfort Allen's wife, who was there when he fell into the water.

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On the hiking review website, All Trails, users have rated the area around Devils Churn as an "amazing" view that can be "daunting" with high winds. Many users recommend staying away from the edge of the inlet.

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