CEDAR GROVE, Wis. – An ice-skating trip at a small pond ended tragically Friday when a young girl fell through the ice and her father plunged in trying to save her. Authorities searching with divers and boats recovered their bodies.
Brian Obbink, 44, of nearby Oostburg, and his two daughters, ages 9 and 6, were skating on the football-field size pond Friday morning when the older girl, Megan, fell through the ice, Sheboygan County Sheriff's Sgt. Doug Tuttle said.
The father also fell in while apparently trying to rescue her, Tuttle said. The 6-year-old then ran to a nearby home and someone called 911.
Rescuers chopped through the ice and searched the pond by small boat Friday afternoon, when snow was falling and the temperature was 22 degrees. The Sheboygan County Law Enforcement Dive Team found the bodies, Tuttle said.
A person who answered the phone at the Obbink home Friday evening said the family did not want to comment.
The pond in Cedar Grove, about 40 miles north of Milwaukee, is 8 to 10 feet deep and the ice was less than 3 inches thick.
Neighbor Bill Schreiber said he saw two people running to the pond, one of them in shorts. "I thought it was a dog accident because I've never seen people on the pond, only guys training their hunting dogs out there," he said.
Around the same time as the accident in Cedar Grove, about 10 miles to the northwest in the Town of Lyndon, rescuers pulled a 12-year-old boy from a small pond after his all-terrain vehicle fell through the ice, according to Cascade Police Chief Cory Roeseler.
The boy was in critical condition at St. Nicholas Hospital in Sheboygan, Roeseler said.
Sheriff's Deputy Jim Opgenorth said the deaths were a reminder that people need to careful around ice.
"There is no such thing as safe ice," he said.