GARY, Ind.– A 12-year-old boy drowned in Marquette Beach in Gary Thursday evening.
Marquette Beach is one of Lake Michigan’s many beaches.
Investigators with the Department of Natural Resources said the boy was swimming at Marquette Beach with his family from Glenwood, Illinois. Family members say the boy stepped into deeper water.
“They were in about waist-deep water and suddenly found themselves a little deeper than they expected, where they weren’t able to touch the bottom,” said Tyler Brock, an officer with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
When the boy did not resurface, lifeguards immediately began looking for him.
“At about 6:20 pm, a member of the Portage Fire Department on a jet ski saw the victim under the water,” said Brock.
That firefighter brought the boy to shore. He was later pronounced dead. Indiana Conservation Officers are conducting an ongoing investigation with the Gary Police Department and Lake County Coroner’s Office.
The boy has been identified as Jerail Lee Jr. of south suburban Glenwood.
More than 15 people have drowned in Lake Michigan so far this year. The Department of Natural Resources says the rip currents in the water are dangerous this time of year and could be dangerous once again this weekend.