ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) - The Allen County Coroner's office has confirmed that the three-year-old boy found underwater in Bowman Lake at Fox Island on Sunday has died at a Fort Wayne hospital.
The coroner's office has identified the boy as Hayden Vogan of Fort Wayne.
The coroner confirmed Wednesday that Vogan died from asphyxia due to drowning. Vogan's death was ruled accidental.
Allen County police said Vogan was found underneath the water in the roped off swimming area of Bowman Lake by another swimmer around 12:15 p.m. Sunday. That swimmer pulled the boy out of the water and brought him to shore.
According to a police report, there were conflicting accounts about an argument at the time of the incident. At least one witness thought there was an argument between a three-year-old boy's father and a group on the beach. The witness thinks that argument went on for five to 10 minutes before people realized the boy was in the water.
Other witnesses initially thought there was an argument, but said it turned into yelling about calling 9-1-1.
Some witnesses thought the boy had a life jacket on, but either slipped out of it, or someone removed it.
A couple Good Samaritans rushed to help the boy once he was brought to shore. One was a certified lifeguard with a passion for aquatics. He said he and another woman gave Vogan CPR for about three to four minutes until emergency crews arrived.
Officials said Vogan was initially taken to the hospital in critical condition, but later died.
The toddler's drowning marks the 8th drowning reported in northeast Indiana from March through July 23 in 2013. Five of these incidents involve victims ages 18 and under:
- 3/23/13: 86-year-old found in Monroeville pond and later dies
- 4/29/13: 52-year-old jumped into St. Mary's River near Main Street in Fort Wayne and later dies
- 5/30/13: 18-year-old drowns in St. Joe River in Fort Wayne
- 6/15/13: 5-year-old found floating in Bixler Lake in Noble County and later dies
- 6/16/13: 18-year-old drowns in Salamonie Reservoir in Huntington County
- 6/25/13: 70-year-old drowns in Little Chapman Lake northeast of Warsaw
- 7/8/13: 15-year-old drowns in Cedar Lake in LaGrange County
- 7/21/13: Vogan, 3, found underwater at Bowman Lake and later dies
There are no lifeguards on duty at Bowman Lake. Fox Island's website specifically states, "Bowman Lake – Swimming beach – No lifeguard on duty, swim at your own risk." Both Allen County parks and all but one of the Indiana State Parks have this policy around their open swimming areas.
The incident remains under investigation by the Allen County Police Department, the Allen County Coroner's Office, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
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