Body of father who tried saving daughter, friend recovered from St. Louis River |

Body of father who tried saving daughter, friend recovered from St. Louis River

Rebecca Omastiak
Updated: June 10, 2021 11:45 AM
Created: June 10, 2021 07:29 AM

Authorities recovered the body of a man who tried helping two children struggling while swimming near Boy Scout Landing in Duluth Wednesday.

Authorities were called at around 1:55 p.m. Wednesday when two children, ages 5 and 8, went underwater while swimming near a sandbar, according to Hubbard Broadcasting sister station WDIO-TV.

People nearby saved both children but 31-year-old Kevin Ingles, of Superior, went in the water to help and didn't return to the surface.

Multiple agencies responded for a search that lasted several hours, WDIO-TV reported. His body was recovered from the St. Louis River at 5:20 p.m.

Authorities said the 8-year-old was Ingles' daughter, and the 5-year-old was a friend she had just met.

Kerry Lee, who lives nearby and went out in his boat when he saw the children struggling, said neither of the girls were wearing life jackets when he reached them. He was able to pull one of the girls into the boat with him, and threw the other girl a life jacket and a throw cushion so she could float next to his boat until a boy was able to swim out and bring her in the rest of the way. 

Lee told WDIO-TV he wants this incident to serve as a reminder to take proper precautions and be vigilant.

"There is no buoy markers, there's no ropes," Lee said. "There's a deep drop-off. It drops right off. I'm just hoping the state or federal, whoever is involved with this, or the city of Duluth does something about this situation because it's gonna happen again."  

The American Red Cross suggests the following water safety tips:

  • Swim in designated areas only.
  • When children are swimming, it is best to never leave them unattended. The Red Cross also suggests putting young swimmers in a U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal floatation device. 
  • Those swimming in an area without a lifeguard on duty are advised to use the buddy system. 
  • Make sure people present know how to respond to water emergencies by having proper safety equipment, first aid, and CPR training. 

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources suggests the following boating safety tips:

  • Those planning to go out on a boat are advised to wear a personal floatation device.
  • Because use of alcohol is the number one factor in boating fatalities, it is suggested to avoid alcohol consumption.
  • With changeable weather, check the forecast before going boating.
  • Boaters should always tell a friend or family member where they plan to be when taking a boat out. 

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