Body of Second Missing Beardstown Youth Found Saturday

By Jeremy Coumbes on August 8, 2020 at 1:08pm

At 12:00 pm Saturday, Beardstown Fire and Rescue issued the following statement:

The search for the second of two boys who disappeared in the Illinois River Thursday evening has come to an end.

The body of the second youth, missing since Thursday evening, was discovered at about 11:30 a.m Saturday in shallow water on the Cass County side of the river — almost within eyesight of the sandbar where both boys were last seen.

The body of the other missing boy was discovered at about 9:30 a.m. Friday near the Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad bridge also not far from where the two boys were last seen. 

More than eight emergency response agencies from throughout the Illinois River Valley took part in the day-and-a-half search effort, with some agencies coming from as far as the Quad Cities and Wisconsin.

“Words can simply not express the sadness our community feels at the loss of these two young people, and our most sincere sympathies are extended to the members of their families,” said Brian Becker, Beardstown Fire/Rescue Chief. “Again, on behalf of Beardstown Fire/Rescue, I thank anyone and everyone who helped or offered assistance during this tragic time for our community. People can fault Beardstown for a lot of things, but they can’t fault the compassion and the heart of this community. The support people have shown for this department and the volunteers who’ve served here these last few days has been remarkable.” Becker concluded.

Search operations for the two boys began shortly after 8 p.m. Thursday night and continued into the early morning hours before being suspended. The two boys, ages 12 and 15 had reportedly been wading in shallow water near the bridge and apparently ventured out too far when they were caught up in the current and disappeared.

The identities of the two boys are being withheld by authorities at this time.