Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT  Niles water rescue crews search the St. Joseph River in Niles after receiving a report of a possible body in the water Thursday afternoon.
Leader photo/CRAIG HAUPERT
Niles Fire river rescue crews search the St. Joseph River in Niles after receiving a report of a possible body in the water Thursday afternoon.

Archived Story

Rescue crews respond to possible body in river

Published 4:02pm Thursday, July 10, 2014

A call for a possible rescue on the St. Joseph River in Niles took an unusual twist Thursday afternoon.

Around 2:30 p.m., public safety officials received a call of a possible body floating in the river near the playground at Riverfront Park.

When firefighters and police reached the boat access near the wastewater treatment plant on Marmont Street, they found a live person on a Sea-Doo and pulled him and the personal watercraft to shore.

Niles City Fire Chief Larry Lamb said the person on the Sea-Doo had called for help as he was floating by the park.

Lamb surmised that a person hearing the call for help reported that there was a body in the river to an employee at Wonderland Cinema, who then called dispatchers.

Like a game of telephone, the plea for help turned into a possible body floating in the river.

Police were unable to locate the person who reported the body in the water to the theater. However, an employee at the theater confirmed that a person had told them that there was a body in the river.

Niles City Fire personnel then led a search of the river just to be safe.

The search concluded around 3:45 p.m. with no body found.

On Tuesday morning, a 25-year-old woman fell into the St. Joseph River near Seitz Park in South Bend, Indiana. The body of the woman — Yolanda Anderson — has not been found.

Lamb said it would be unlikely that a body would travel this far down river this quickly.

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