MAMARONECK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – The summer swim season got off to a tragic start over the holiday weekend. The body of a Westchester County man was pulled from the water on Monday morning.

The glassy semi-circle of water in Island Harbor Park is a tranquil as a backyard pool and every bit as deadly. Larvell Paylor, 28, of Mount Vernon died here late Sunday while swimming with friends a stone’s throw from shore, reports CBS 2’s Lou Young.

Eric Coburn said he watched the immediate aftermath from a nearby fishing pier.

“He must have gone under really fast because there were other people in the water looking for him,” Coburn said.

The tragedy happened at around 6 p.m. when it was still light out. The response was immediate and intense.

“I saw people running around the beach, then one police came flying over and the cop ran into the water immediately to look for him. Additional police cars came, then a whole series of boats,” Coburn said.

Police said the water was about 12 to 13 feet deep and the tide was coming up.

The beach isn’t open for swimming until June 18, but it is open for sunbathing until 5 p.m. and there are lifeguards on duty just in case. If the victim had been in the water before 5 p.m. he would’ve been chased away.

As it turned out, the cries of his friends brought would-be rescuers back to the beach.

It was a tragic object lesson as the summer swim season begins.

The victim’s friends told Young he could swim, but not well. None wanted to speak on camera, but seemed as stunned as everyone else that the protected little spot of harbor could’ve claimed their friend’s life.

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