CLEVELAND — An 11-year-old girl has died after a drowning incident that also claimed the lives of her father and brother earlier this week at Cleveland Metroparks' Wallace Lake in Berea.
On Friday, the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office announced that Lily Lozitsky died at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center.
37-year-old Veniamin Loitsky and his six children were fishing at Wallace Lake on Monday evening. According to the Loitsky family, Lily unexpectedly stepped into a part of the water that had a sudden drop.
Veniamin went into the water along with his 10-year-old son Luke to try to rescue Lily, while the other children were able to find an adult who called 911. The family says by the time someone came to their aid and emergency crews arrived, Lily, Veniamin, and Luke had been underwater for over 20 minutes.
Cleveland Metroparks Police and Berea Police removed Lily from the water at approximately 6:55 p.m. and Veniamin and Luke were pulled from the water at approximately 7:20 p.m. The Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner's Office confirmed the deaths of Veniamin and Luke on Tuesday morning.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to support the Lozitsky family.
On Tuesday afternoon, Cleveland Metroparks gave the following statement to 3News following the drowning, which includes a warning about swimming in designated swimming areas, plus other tips:
"We urge guests to follow our swimming safety tips when swimming in Cleveland Metroparks: swim only in designated swimming areas and only when lifeguards are present, never swim alone, inexperienced swimmers should wear U.S. Coast Guard approved life jackets, and never leave children unattended near the water. Visit clevelandmetroparks.com/watersafety.
At Wallace Lake we urge guests to only swim at the designated swim area which has beach access, is roped off, shallow, and in a highly visible location.
As an inland lake, the water at Wallace Lake is generally calm but the area where this incident occurred is not in the designated swim area and is towards the southern portion of the lake, obscured from view by tree cover, and has varying and unpredictable lake depths. Cleveland Metroparks does not have another drowning incident on record at Wallace Lake.
Our heartfelt sympathies are with the family involved in this tragic incident."