Man dies after being pulled from Bde Maka Ska

Shores of Bde Maka Ska
Bde Maka Ska. File photo

A 19-year-old man who was pulled from the waters of Bde Maka Ska died at the hospital, officials say. 

On Tuesday, June 16, Minneapolis firefighters responded to two men drowning at Bde Maka Ska’s Thomas Beach, according to the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office. One man died after being transported to the Hennepin County Medical Center for treatment, the sheriff’s office said on June 19. The victim has been identified as Mickenzie Tyler Martin, of Santa Clara, Calf., by the Hennepin County Medical Examiners’s office. 

The other man was treated at HCMC and released, according to the sheriff’s office, which is investigating the incident.

The drowning occurred when a group of young adults was playing with a flotation device that was blown into the middle of the lake, according to the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. A 20-year-old man got caught in the weeds when he attempted to retrieve the object, and his 19-year-old friend tried to help him and ended up underwater for a longer period of time. Both were treated with CPR at the scene.  

Another near drowning was reported June 16 at Lake Nokomis, where beachgoers pulled a struggling man out of the water and administered CPR, according to the sheriff’s office. He remains in critical condition at HCMC. The next day, a woman was pulled from the water near Minnehaha Falls and was treated with CPR by first responders before being sent to HCMC for treatment.

Beaches in the city are open, though they have not been staffed with lifeguards this summer due to the coronavirus pandemic. Signs posted at beaches have advised people to be cautious and swim at their own risk.  

The MPRB is planning to start staffing popular beaches, including Thomas Beach, with lifeguards on weekends beginning Saturday, June 20. Lifeguards will be posted daily at the five most popular beaches in the city by July 2, the MPRB announced. 

For the weekends of June 20-21 and June 27-28, lifeguards will be posted at Thomas Beach, Wirth Lake Beach and Lake Nokomis Main Beach. By July 2, lifeguards will be working daily at those because, in addition to Lake Harriet’s North Beach and Cedar Lake’s East Beach.