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Man drowns in Iron Range mine pit

A Buhl man died Saturday after he attempted to rescue a dog in a mine pit, authorities said.

An eyewitness reported seeing Gary Paternoster, 56, go into the Buhl Pit at the end of State Street just after 6 p.m. to retrieve his dog, which was apparently caught on something in the water, the St. Louis County Sheriff's Office said in a news release. Paternoster reportedly sank in the water before reaching the animal.

The St. Louis County Rescue Squad pulled Paternoster, who still had a pulse at the time, from the water around 8 p.m. and transported him by ambulance to Fairview Range Medical Center in Hibbing where he died shortly after, the news release said.

The Chisholm Police Department and the Buhl Fire Department, ambulance and first responders assisted at the scene. The incident remains under investigation.

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