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Local News

Man dies in Romeoville retention pond, fire officials say

Emergency responders recovered the body of a man who had been kayaking in a "large residential pond" in Romeoville early Tuesday morning.
Emergency responders recovered the body of a man who had been kayaking in a "large residential pond" in Romeoville early Tuesday morning.

ROMEOVILLE – Lockport Township Fire Protection District responded to a call of a water rescue a little after midnight Monday in Romeoville, fire officials said, where one man died while another survived.

According to a news release from the district, emergency crews responded to a call for a person in the water in the 1600 block of Aster Drive in Romeoville at 12:12 a.m. Tuesday. When crews arrived, they learned that two individuals had been kayaking on the “large residential pond” behind the homes and, for an unknown reason, both ended up in the water, fire officials said.

Lockport Fire Deputy Chief Paul Hertzmann said the individuals were two adult men.

Fire personnel were able to rescue one of the men, and Lockport divers began searching for the other, who had gone under the water and not resurfaced, according to the release. Divers searched for the second man for 90 minutes in rescue mode before deciding to change their approach. The team then used sonar and underwater video equipment to locate the man’s body.

Hertzmann said the body of 30-year-old Romeoville resident Janusz Slaby was recovered at 3:30 a.m.

Slaby was pronounced dead at the scene, according to a news release from the Will County Coroner’s Office. An autopsy performed Tuesday showed Slaby was an apparent drowning victim. Funeral arrangements are pending.

According to the office’s release, final cause and manner of death will be determined following completed police, autopsy and toxicological reports.

The MABAS 19 Water Rescue Team, Romeoville Fire Department, Plainfield Fire Protection District, Northwest Homer Fire Protection District and Westmont Fire Department assisted at the scene, according to the release. East Joliet Fire Department, New Lenox Fire Protection District, Bolingbrook Fire Department and Troy Fire Protection District alternated in covering Lockport stations.

The Romeoville Police Department continues to investigate the incident and was not available for comment Tuesday morning.

This is a developing story. Check back with The Herald-News for updates.

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