Coupled opted for duck boat ride at last minute

BRANSON, Mo. – A St. Louis-area couple who died in the tourist boat accident near Branson apparently opted for the duck boat ride at the last minute.

Among the 17 people who died Thursday on Table Rock Lake were 68-year-old Rosemarie Hamann and 69-year-old William Asher. Hamann celebrated her birthday earlier in the week. Her final Facebook photo was a selfie with Asher. He’s sticking his tongue out, and she’ smiling at his silliness.

Russ McKay of St. Louis met the couple four years ago when they offered to help with a charity event McKay was organizing. Since then, they worked on annual charities for veterans.

McKay said he talked to Hamann nearly every day, including during her trip to Branson. On Wednesday, she told McKay that she and Asher had just gone on the Branson Belle paddle boat and were planning to go again. But for some reason they opted instead for the duck boat. McKay didn’t know why.