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Man injured in boating accident moved to hospice care

By Staff | Jul 17, 2010

A man hospitalized in May following a boating accident in Cape Coral has been placed under hospice care, according to the hospital’s website.
Jason T. Baldner, 35, of 2110 Maplewood Drive, Onalaska, Wis., remains at Gundersen Lutheran Health Center in Wisconsin where he has been receiving treatment since being transferred there in May. According to the website, Baldner has had complications and became a hospice patience on Saturday.
He has a wife and four daughters.
According to officials, Baldner was injured May 8 when the 37-foot boat he was riding in hit a seawall near Cantry Canal at the end of Coral Point Drive in the Cape at about 7:23 p.m. The vessel was traveling at a high rate of speed before it topped the seawall and partially landed on the land.
Jason B. Williams, 36, of 2011 S.E. 13th St., was driving the boat, while Balder and Eric J. Terpsman, 31, of 1041 S.E. 20th Ave., were passengers. The men were trauma-alerted to Lee Memorial Hospital with injuries. Williams and Terpsman were discharged, and Baldner was transferred to Gundersen.
Gary Morse, a spokesman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, said alcohol is suspected to have played a role. As of about a week ago, the investigator on the case was still awaiting the test results.
“All test results will be forthcoming when the investigation is finished,” he said.
No charges have been filed.
The investigation, which was initially expected to take about six weeks, has been delayed because the investigator had hoped to speak with Baldner about what happened in the accident. Morse said Friday that that may not happen.
“This is a complex legal case, and we are going to take our time and make sure all the I’s are dotted and the T’s are crossed properly,” he said.
Morse explained that it makes a “huge difference” in the investigation as to whether Baldner survives and what condition he survives in. That can have an affect on “what charges could be forthcoming,” he said.
Morse would not discuss what information, if any, has been provided by Williams and Terpsman, nor why Baldner’s statement is so important.
“The fact is every piece of evidence is still part of the investigation,” he said. “You have to wait and see how all the information comes together.”
“It’s all under investigation,” Morse added.
According to the hospital’s website, an account has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank for the Baldner family. To donate, designate the funds for the “Jason T Baldner Donation Fund” by visiting any Wells Fargo Bank branch.