Fire crews respond Friday afternoon to a report of a water rescue on Columbia Bay near the Fox Lake in unincorporated Antioch. | Photo: Joe Shuman (2021).

A 43-year-old man died of drowning while trying to rescue a child in distress on a lake near Antioch Friday afternoon. Police called the incident “a tragic accident.”

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office, Fox Lake Fire Protection District and Antioch Fire Department responded around 3:40 p.m. Friday to the Fox Lake for a possible drowning.

Lake County Sheriff Spokesman Lt. Christopher Covelli said marine unit deputies arrived and learned the victim had just been pulled from the lake.

A passing boater that rescued the 43-year-old Joilet man from the water drove to Tradewinds Marine Center, 38788 North Broadway Avenue in unincorporated Antioch.

Paramedics arrived at the marina and began performing CPR on the unresponsive man.

He was transported by ambulance to Northwestern McHenry Hospital where he later was pronounced dead, Covelli said.

Fire crews respond Friday afternoon to a report of a water rescue on Columbia Bay near the Fox Lake in unincorporated Antioch. | Photo: Joe Shuman (2021).

A preliminary investigation shows the victim was with his girlfriend and her daughters and they had rented a boat from a Chain O’Lakes boat rental company.

The boat was anchored in the area of Columbia Bay near the Fox Lake and the three girls were swimming in the water, Covelli said.

One of the girls started having trouble swimming and the 43-year-old man jumped into the water to help her.

While attempting to help the girl, the victim went under the water and did not resurface, Covelli said. He was located submerged approximately 15 minutes later.

The children were not injured and were able to get out of the water.

Lake County sheriff’s detectives are investigating the incident, which Covelli said appears to be “a tragic accident.”

The McHenry County Coroner’s Office is in the process of scheduling an autopsy on the victim.