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Missing swimmer found dead in Lake Michigan identified
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Missing swimmer found dead in Lake Michigan identified

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EVANSTON — Emergency crews near Evanston’s Clark Street Beach found the body of a 21-year-old swimmer after a seven-hour search for the man who went missing Saturday in Lake Michigan. His body was found after three other people were saved in an earlier rescue.

While Evanston firefighters remained on the scene of the first emergency, they discovered unclaimed property of another swimmer, including shoes and clothing, and nearly 100 firefighters jumped in the water again, said Patrick Deignan, an Evanston spokesman.

The situation began about 12:55 p.m. when a 911 caller reported three people struggling in the water near Clark Street Beach, Deignan said. They were found clinging to a breakwall.

“Fire responded and quickly pulled all three out — a mother, her minor daughter and a good Samaritan who tried to help them,’’ Deignan said. The good Samaritan is an adult male.

All three were taken to hospitals, including one who was in critical condition. The others were listed in good condition and Deignan said he did not know which of them suffered the most serious injuries.

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About 2 p.m., crews who were still on the scene found “unclaimed belongings,” including identification, of another person who was near the beach, Deignan said.

Security camera footage showed that someone entered the lake, went underwater and did not resurface, according to the Evanston Fire Department.

A “second level MABAS dive box” was activated, bringing in the assistance of many neighboring towns including dozens of firefighters, divers and rescue boats.

About 4:30 p.m., the mission turned into a “recovery,’’ Deignan said.

The man’s body was found about 9 p.m., according to the fire department.

He was identified as Hussin Abdul-Samad, 21, of the 2300 block of West Devon Avenue in Chicago, according to information from the Cook County medical examiner’s office. He was pronounced dead at 9:20 p.m. in the 1700 block of Sheridan Road in Evanston, near Clark Street Beach and the Cornelia Lunt Park.

Evanston officials had previously said the swimmer they located was 20; the medical examiner’s office said he was 21.

“It’s sad,’’ Deignan said. “This time of year the water can be really unpredictable, even on a beautiful day.”

Clark Street Beach — along with most, if not all, Chicago-area beaches — closed for swimming for the season on Labor Day. Beaches typically reopen to the public and again are staffed with lifeguards each Memorial Day weekend.

Chicago Tribune reporter Katherine Rosenberg-Douglas contributed.

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