LUDINGTON, Mich. (WOOD) — West Michigan is home to the deadliest Great Lake when it comes to drownings, according to new numbers from the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project.
GLSRP says half of the 44 Great Lakes drownings that have happened so far this year took place in Lake Michigan. Additionally, one person pulled from Lake Michigan was last listed in critical condition, and a couple of scuba divers from Illinois who died in the big lake.
Great Lakes drownings in 2019 (As of July 24, 2019):
- Lake Michigan: 22 drownings
- Lake Erie: 10 drownings
- Lake Ontario: 6 drownings
- Lake Huron: 5 drownings
- Lake Superior: 2 drownings
GLSRP says since 2010, 784 people have lost their lives in Lakes Michigan, Superior, Huron, Erie and Ontario. Great Lakes drownings spiked at 117 last year, with the water claiming 29 more lives than the year prior.
The most recent Lake Michigan drowning involved 18-year-old Daniel McCarthy of Baldwin, who got caught in a current along with eight other swimmers, but never made it to shore. Crews recovered his body around 9:45 p.m. Tuesday at Ludington State Park.
While the majority of drownings this year have taken place in the Chicago area, the following people died in Michigan’s section of Lake Michigan this year:
Jacob Sandy, 23, from South Bend, Indiana —The Hope College graduate was last seen kayaking near Porter Beach on May 18. His body was discovered about a quarter-mile east on May 29.
Unidentified boy, 13, from Ann Arbor — The boy was in Lake Michigan off South Haven’s South Beach on July 13 when witnesses say he and several other swimmers drifted away from shore and couldn’t make it back. The boy was found about 100 yards south of the South Pier about 22 minutes later. Rescuers tried to revive him, but he died at the hospital.
Albrianna Huck, 14, of Ludington — Albrianna was walking with relatives on Ludington’s Stearns Beach when she disappeared July 18. Good Samaritans found her in the water about two hours later and tried to revive her, but she died at the hospital.
Daniel McCarthy, 18, of Baldwin — McCarthy was with seven other swimmers when he was swept out into Lake Michigan near Ludington State Park. Everyone else made it back onto shore. McCarthy’s body was recovered Tuesday night after an underwater robot located him about 300 yards offshore.
Read the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project’s full drowning summary on the organization’s website.