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Lake Michigan: Body pulled hours after 2 falls in Playpen – Chicago Tribune

The body of a 38-year-old Chicago man was pulled from the waters near Port Montrose early Thursday, hours after Second boat accident in a week In the party-friendly Lake Michigan area known as “Playpen,” one person was left in critical condition and another went missing.

Emergency responders were called to block 200 of West Montrose Harbor Drive to report a body in the water, according to Chicago police. Authorities said the man’s body was “pulled out of the water” by Chicago Fire Department personnel at 12:22 a.m., and taken to Vice Memorial Hospital in the Uptown neighborhood where he was pronounced dead at 2:13 a.m., according to authorities. Information from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

He was identified as Francisco Gonzalez, 38, of the 6400 block on North Bell Street, according to Brittany Hill, a spokeswoman for the medical examiner’s office.

At a news conference Thursday, Lt. Tony Mendes of the Chicago Police Navy said he was not the same person who went missing after two people fell from a boat in the Playpen around 7 p.m. Wednesday. The search for the missing person resumed on Thursday morning and continued until noon today.

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Gonzalez was the second person pulled from the lake in as many days and the third this week.

Luis Alberto Davila Vera, 43, of 1000 Block of West 15th Street, He died on Wednesday morning. His body was pulled from Lake Michigan near Port Diversy, the authorities said. Chicago police classified the case as a death investigation. The Chicago Fire Department said he appeared to have “crawled and fell into (the port),” indicating an accidental drowning, though the Cook County medical examiner’s office has yet to determine the cause of his death. That agency was expected to perform an autopsy on Thursday.

Vera fell into the water off a 2,600-block beach of North Cannon Drive in Lincoln Park at 5:02 a.m. Wednesday — but did not reappear, according to Chicago police. The fire department and officers from the police marine unit responded and pulled his body out of the water. Police said he was taken by ambulance to Advocate Illinois Freemason Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead at 5:54 a.m.

Also this week, the day before Vera died, Whiting officials retrieved the body of a Chicago man who had been missing for two weeks After he and his friend went boating on Lake Michigan.

Dexter Trendell Sain, 36, is found about 200 yards offshore, near Whiting Lakefront Park. Sain drowned, according to the Lake County Coroner’s Office in Indiana, who performed an autopsy on Wednesday.

Sean and Curtis Heron, also 36, have been missing since the morning of July 27, when they boarded a boat in Lake Michigan. Family members said the couple likely wanted to give their 30-foot-tall pilner, Cindy Ann, a running experience, and old friends from Chicago had very little boating experience.

The 7 p.m. call about two people falling from a boat was the second time in less than a week that people were badly injured in the Playpen.

Two women, including Lana Patcher, were seriously injured in a boat accident on Saturday night. Patcher was floating on an inflatable raft when a 37-foot-tall yacht suddenly flipped, sucking her from underneath. Patcher underwent amputation of both legs After the boat’s propellers snapped her feet.

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Patcher retained the law firm of Corboy & Demetrio to represent her. The legal team plans to launch an “investigation as an initial step into potential litigation,” according to an emailed statement from Helen Lukaitis, attorney and spokeswoman for Corboy & Demetrio.

“She underwent a series of three surgeries that resulted in the amputation of both of her legs, 10 inches below her knees,” Betcher, 34, a mother of two said.

Chicago Tribune reporter Jake Sheridan and Stephanie Casanova contributed.

kdouglas@chicagotribune.com

Twitter @312BreakingNews

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