Authorities Suspend Search for Teen Missing in Des Plaines River as Community Members Carry On

Cameron Sanders

Cameron Sanders, the 16-year-old boy who may have drowned in the Des Plaines River on Saturday. | Provided

Monday, May 15, 2017 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews

Authorities who were searching for a teenager who may have drowned in the Des Plaines River near Melrose Park on Saturday have suspended their efforts, according to an ABC 7 Chicago report.

Cameron Sanders, 16, jumped into the water with three friends while hanging out with around a dozen of his peers at around 4:30 p.m. on May 13, somewhere in the 8300 block of West North Avenue, behind Lincoln College of Technology.

Sanders’s family told reporters that the teenager couldn’t swim and may have jumped into the water after being pressured by his peers.

“Sunday morning, officials called the effort to find the boy a recovery mission,” ABC 7 reported. “Shortly after 4 p.m., crews cleared from the staging area after searching the river several miles south of where Sanders had jumped from a railroad bridge. Boats, canines and helicopters were employed Sunday in the search efforts.”

The family of Sanders, who is reportedly from Lisle, said that the search has been canceled and have voiced their frustration with the authorities conducting the search operation.

“(His mother) and her daughter were going through the woods, you could see their feet were all nasty and their legs were all muddy,” Mary Morgan, a friend of the family, told ABC 7.

“They had been going down themselves and there was nobody there. There were no other teams down there to help find the body. I know the mother is very upset and she just doesn’t know which way to turn now.”

Anthony Clark, a high school teacher from Oak Park and founder of the nonprofit Suburban Unity Alliance, has planned to lead a community-based search effort.

“We will be searching the banks along the Des Plaines River near Rainbow Bridge,” Clark stated in a flyer he is circulating. The search will take place on March 15 at 4:30 p.m.

Volunteers can park at Sunset Bridge Meadow Picnic Grove #1 North Ave., River Grove. The staging area is across from Menards and before McDonald’s. Anyone with more information can call Clark at (773) 584-7276. VFP

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