MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- A 7-year-old blind girl from Michigan drowned Friday night in Lake Calhoun in Minneapolis while she was swimming with fellow blind children.
The girl was with a group of about a dozen visually impaired children from Blind Inc. in Minneapolis. They were off the north beach when lifeguards doing a safety check noticed her missing shortly after 7 p.m., said Sgt. Fred McCormick of the Minneapolis Park Police.
Nearby swimmers in the area helped look for the girl by working with supervisors and lifeguards to form a human chain to comb the water, he said. A civilian pulled the girl out shortly before 7:30 p.m.
Police estimated the girl had been lost in the water about 10 minutes. When she was pulled out, she was very blue, McCormick said.
A park police officer tried to resuscitate her by doing CPR. As he was doing so a man who said he was doctor offered to help and the two continued trying to revive her. The man left the scene and police did not have his name.
The girl began coughing and started to breath on her own. When paramedics arrived, they put her into an ambulance and tried to stabilize her, McCormick said.
However, the girl never maintained strong breathing and was pronounced dead at Hennepin County Medical Center.
The children, who ranged in age from roughly 7 to early teens, were taken by city bus back to Blind Inc., where grief counselors and a chaplain told them of the girl's death and tried to calm them, McCormick said.
Blind Inc. is an outreach and education program for blind adults and children.
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