A boat drove off the Fox River and went airborne before hitting a house, leaving two people dead, in the 600 block of Country Club Drive in unincorporated McHenry Saturday evening. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

State officials say a husband and wife in their 60s died after a boat traveling “very fast” on the Fox River ran aground over 70 feet onto shore and struck a house near McHenry.

The McHenry Township Fire Protection District, McHenry County Sheriff’s Office and Illinois Conservation Police responded around 5:40 p.m. Saturday to the 600 block of Country Club Drive in unincorporated McHenry.

Illinois Department of Natural Resources Director of Communications Jayette Bolinski said witnesses reported an open motorboat was traveling “very fast” up and down the Fox River.

The boat was south of the Snuggery River Roadhouse in McHenry and was weaving and cutting back and forth across the water, Bolinski said.

The boat hit the shoreline and left the river at a high rate of speed.

Bolinski said it traveled approximately 73 feet from the shoreline before coming to rest on land.

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The hull of the boat was separated into two pieces following the impact, Bolinski added.

The boat also struck a house after it ran aground. The home was not seriously damaged.

A boat drove off the Fox River and went airborne before hitting a house, leaving two people dead, in the 600 block of Country Club Drive in unincorporated McHenry Saturday evening. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

Nearby resident Conner Lively told Lake and McHenry County Scanner he heard an unusually loud bang and ran out to check it out.

Lively, along with his father and other bystanders on a pontoon boat, rushed to the scene to help the victims.

The bystanders found a man and a woman trapped in the wreckage.

The bystanders worked together to push the wreckage off the male victim but the female victim was “entirely under the boat,” Lively said.

Bolinski said the female victim, a 61-year-old McHenry woman, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The male victim, a 62-year-old McHenry man, was rushed by ambulance to McHenry High School East Campus where a LifeNet medical helicopter landed.

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The helicopter flew the man to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville where he died from his injuries around 8:40 p.m. Saturday, Bolinski said, adding that the victims were husband and wife.

A boat drove off the Fox River and went airborne before hitting a house, leaving two people dead, in the 600 block of Country Club Drive in unincorporated McHenry Saturday evening. | Photo: Joe Shuman/J. Shuman Photography (2023)

A witness, who did not wish to be named, told Lake and McHenry County Scanner she was eating with her family nearby on the patio of the Snuggery River Roadhouse.

The woman said she saw the boat traveling north on the Fox River while “going fast.”

The boat went towards the rocks along River Road near the Snuggery and did a “huge circle around, back toward the rocks” and made a right-hand turn still going “really fast,” the witness said.

The boat did not slow down before it went airborne and crashed, the woman said.

The Lake County Coroner’s Office and McHenry County Coroner’s Office are both in the process of scheduling autopsies on the two victims, whose names are being withheld.

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The Illinois Conservation Police are still investigating what led to the crash.