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Man, woman drown in Lake George in Richton Park

Officers found Daniel Ballenger and Debbie Hill after they were heard screaming for help.

A man and a woman drowned in Lake George in Richton Park
Two people drowned in Lake George March 1, 2020, in Richton Park.
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A man and a woman drowned in Lake George Sunday in south suburban Richton Park.

Authorities responded about 2:10 a.m. after two people were heard yelling for help in the lake near Cicero Avenue, according to Richton Park police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

There, officers found Daniel Ballenger, 24, and 28-year-old Debbie Hill in the water, authorities said. Hill was treading water while Ballenger was fully submerged.

Two officers tried to swim to the pair but were forced to retreat because of the frigid waters, police said. Attempts to throw them ropes were also unsuccessful.

After finding a row boat, officers and members of the Richton Park Fire Department managed to pulled Hill out of the water, police said. Divers were called in to remove Ballenger from the water.

Both were taken to an area hospital, where they were pronounced dead, authorities said.

Autopsy results released Monday confirmed Ballenger died from drowning, and ruled his death an accident, the medical examiner’s office said. A ruling on Hill’s cause and manner of death was pending.