UPDATE: Identity of fisherman found alive released - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

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UPDATE: Identity of fisherman found alive released

SMITH COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - The search lasted for 16 hours. In the end, there was an amazing discovery. Searchers found 61-year-old Mike Ammons alive, clinging to a stump on Lake Palestine.

Ammons and 64-year-old Tommy Cook had been out on Lake Palestine all day Wednesday, fishing near the Villages Marina off of FM 2661

Cook, Mike's Ammons' nephew, unfortunately, did not survive.

Medics rushed to the dock where a search and rescue boat delivered Ammons. Not only still alive, but still coherent.

DPS Trooper Jean Dark says, "He was able to describe exactly what I described to you.. how things happened and the events that lead up to where we are right now."

Ammons and family member, Tommy Cook had been fishing when their boat began taking on so much water, it sank.

"The family knew where their fishing spots were and were able to relay that information to the search and rescue," Dark explained.

And after hours of searching, the men were located--not together, but not far from one of those fishing spots.

"In East Texas we're so grateful to have the helicopter out of Longview. The aviation clearly made a huge difference in how this ended--at least for one family," Dark expressed.

Because it was that helicopter that found Cook's body. And that helicopter that spotted Ammons in the water.

"They were able to identify what looked like blue jeans and of course immediately called for the boat assistance," says Dark.

Ammons was found clinging to a stump in the middle of the lake not far from where his family and rescuers had been sitting, hoping and praying for his and Cook's safe return all night.

Ammons was taken to a Tyler hospital where we're told he is currently in good condition.

Copyright 2011 KLTV. All rights reserved.

Click here to listen to an exclusive interview with Mike Ammons at the hospital.

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