A 29-year-old Fort Wayne man died in an apparent drowning Saturday in Whitley County, according to Indiana conservation officers.
About 2 p.m., the Whitley County sheriff’s office received a call about a possible drowning behind a residence at 7340 N 350 W on Old Lake.
Officers said James M. Beck was swimming alone from the shore to a floating swim raft in the lake. His girlfriend was inside a residence and when she looked outside, she saw that he appeared to be struggling in the water.
She immediately ran to the lake and swam to him. Because of his struggling, she was unable to get hold of him without going under the water herself, officers said. So she let go of him to grab the nearby swim raft. When she turned back, he had disappeared under the surface of the water, officers said
When emergency personnel arrived, divers entered the water and began searching the area where Beck was last seen.
At 8:45 p.m., conservation officers and Kosciusko County dive teams recovered Beck’s body in 20 feet of water.
The Indiana Department of Natural Resources and the Whitley County Coroner’s Office are investigating the case.
An autopsy is scheduled today in Fort Wayne to determine the cause of the death.
Other agencies assisting in the recovery effort were the Richland and Thorncreek township fire departments, Thorncreek and Noble township dive teams, Whitley County sheriff’s department and Whitley County EMS.