WILTON — A Farmington man drowned Tuesday afternoon after he dove into Wilson Lake from his pontoon boat and surfaced struggling, according to a news release by the Maine Warden Service on Wednesday.

Jeffrey “Jeff” Mitchell, 63, was pulled from the water by witnesses prior to the arrival of Maine Warden Service personnel. Wilton firefighters and Wilton police also responded to the incident at approximately 4:36 p.m.

Mitchell was president of Village Realty Inc. in East Wilton.

Mitchell had been boating with a friend, Martha Martin of Wilton, with plans to go swimming, the release said. She attempted to help Mitchell into the boat without success.

She was aided by two nearby kayakers and another boater, and together they removed Mitchell from the water. Mitchell was taken by watercraft to a nearby boat landing, where they were met by medical personnel.

Mitchell was pronounced dead at the scene, the release said.

Proper personal floatation devices were in Mitchell’s pontoon boat. However, he was not wearing one at the time.

The incident remains under investigation.

“He loved his profession and he loved life,” said Colon Durrell, treasurer of Village Realty.

Durrell, Mitchell and others founded the corporation more than 25 years ago.

“He has been a lead broker ever since, and he has been one of the most productive real estate brokers in southern Franklin County,” Durrell said.

“Most everybody is finding it difficult to believe,” he said. “We were all together yesterday and today, we are not.”

Mitchell was a member of the Maine and National associations of realtors for more than 25 years. He also was a member of the Maine Real Estate Commission for more than two decades.

“He will certainly be missed in real estate in Maine and by friends and colleagues,” Durrell said.

Farmington Town Manager Richard Davis said he was shocked to learn about Mitchell’s passing.

“He was a wonderful person, very calm and centered,” Davis said. “He was fair and even-handed. He really cared about his community and was always working with others to improve it. I will miss his friendly manner and sunny disposition.”

Angelia Levesque, president of the Maine Association of Realtors, said Mitchell was very active and involved in the association. He had over 2,000 transactions, which is pretty impressive, she said.

He also taught real estate licensing courses for many years. He was a 25-year commissioner on the Maine Real Estate Commission, she said.

Mitchell was twice honored as Realtor of the Year by the area’s local board, Levesque said.

Earl Black, who previously served with Mitchell on the Maine Real Estate Commission, said he was very insightful to tasks that needed to be done and worked a lot behind the scenes on many tasks, including testing.

“He was just a really insightful guy; very committed to the real estate industry,” Black said. “He is one of those guys who will be greatly missed.”

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