Two die after being pulled from Lake Michigan on Saturday

2013-07-28T12:30:00Z 2013-07-29T15:57:11Z Two die after being pulled from Lake Michigan on SaturdayTimes staff and wire reports nwitimes.com
July 28, 2013 12:30 pm  • 

MICHIGAN CITY | A Lafayette, Ind., man who was hospitalized in critical condition after being pulled from Lake Michigan near Beverly Shores died Saturday.

Also on Saturday, a Tinley Park, teenager died after being pulled out of Lake Michigan in New Buffalo, Mich.

A news release from the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore reported that Gonzola Silva, 37, was pronounced dead by doctors at St. Anthony Health in Michigan City at 9:30 p.m. Saturday.

Silva was swimming in high waves off Lakeview Beach at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and was spotted by family members struggling in the water about 5:30 p.m. Saturday, said Ken Mehne, a law enforcement specialist for the National Park Service.

Family members attempting to help Silva got into trouble in the high surf. When rescuers arrived, two of them had to be pulled from the water, Mehne said.

Rescuers then located Silva floating in the surf about 10 feet from shore. Rescuers pulled him from the water and found him unresponsive. Emergency medical personnel began attempts to revive Silva and rushed him to the hospital.

Silva was initially listed in critical condition upon arrival to the hospital and had a pulse and was placed on a respirator. Initial reports indicate Silva was under the water approximately 20 minutes before being pulled to shore, according to the National Lakeshore news release.

Chicago's WBBM Radio reported that the Cook County Medical Examiner's office identified the teen pulled out of the lake in southwest Michigan as 15-year-old Matthew Kocher of Tinley Park.

Lifeguards at a city beach in New Buffalo pulled the teen out of the water at about 2:30 Saturday afternoon. The radio station says that the rescuers began CPR on him and transported him to a hospital in Michigan City. He was then taken to University of Chicago Comer Children's Hospital in Chicago, where was pronounced dead at 8:21 p.m.

According to a news release from the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project, Saturday's deaths are the 16th and 17th on Lake Michigan since June 16. So far this year, the organization stated, 44 people have died in all of the Great Lakes.

The National Weather Service had issued a Hazardous Beach Advisory for Saturday afternoon through this morning, with waves of 4 to 5 feet expected.

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