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Somerville man drowns in diving accident while filming political candidate in Montana

A Massachusetts man drowned while filming a promotional video for a prospective congressional candidate in Montana earlier this week.

Jesse Travers Hubbell, 40, of Somerville died Monday in a diving accident while shooting on location at Canyon Ferry Lake, authorities said.

Hubbell was a Berklee College of Music alum. A Berklee spokeswoman confirmed that he graduated from the college and received a bachelor’s degree in professional music in 2002.

Captain Kevin Wright of the Lewis and Clark County Sheriff’s office said Hubbell was part of a commercial production crew that was filming the video for potential US Senate candidate John Mues.

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Hubbell and Mues were wearing wetsuits and diving gear when they entered the lake, and Hubbell began to have issues soon after he got into the water, Wright said.

“John was in the water with him . . . but was unable to help him,” Wright said. “He tried several times.”

Wright said Hubbell disappeared in water that was at least 30 feet deep and it took two days of searching to locate him. A thermal drone from iFlyBigSky, an aerial photography company, and trained dogs were used in the search for his body, which was recovered Tuesday afternoon.

“He was found on the second day of the search,” Wright said.

The cause of his death was determined to be an accidental drowning, Wright said.

It’s unclear what kind of trouble Hubbell experienced when he entered the water, and the incident remains under investigation, he said.


Emily Sweeney can be reached at esweeney@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @emilysweeney.