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Police identify victims in South Haven drownings

22-year-old Kory Ernster and 19-year-old Emily MacDonald were pulled from the water Monday by bystanders prior to first responders arriving.

SOUTH HAVEN, Mich — Two people have died after being pulled from Lake Michigan in South Haven Monday, according to South Haven Area Emergency Services.

Officials say around 12:39 p.m. Monday, police were called for two possible drownings.

When they arrived, bystanders had already pulled the victims from the water before first responders could arrive. They rendered care on-site before taking the two victims to a nearby hospital. 

One of the victims was identified as Kory Ernster, a 22-year-old man from Novi. The other was 19-year-old Emily MacDonald from Columbus, Michigan. 

Prior to the rescue, yellow flags were flying on the beach but now red flags are flying. 

A yellow flag means there is a moderate current and caution should be exercised when entering the water. A red flag means the water is closed to the public and rip currents are especially dangerous along the pier. 

RELATED: Wyoming man identified as victim in Grand Haven drowning

This comes after a 21-year-old man drowned in Lake Michigan at Grand Haven State Park on Sunday.

RELATED: 'Very dangerous conditions': Body recovered from Lake Michigan at Grand Haven State Park

Just before 4 p.m. Sunday, the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety says it responded to a call of a swimmer being swept away beyond the swim buoys.

Grand Haven State Park had posted on their Facebook page Sunday morning that the flags on the beach were considered red and that swimming was not advised.

"Red flag today, as you can see, and this is a little mellow of what it was a couple of hours ago," said Jeff Hawke of the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety. "So very dangerous conditions. Even the rescuers who were trained in this water were having trouble with the rip current."

A double red flag is flying at Grand Haven State Park due to strong waves.

🚩 🚩 DOUBLE RED FLAGS are flying at Grand Haven State Park Monday after a 21-year-old Wyoming man drowned over the...

Posted by 13 On Your Side on Monday, August 8, 2022

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