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3-year old drowns at Johnson Lake after tipping over in floating toy

Dawson/Gosper Counties, Johnson Lake
Johnson Lake
Johnson Lake(Melanie Standiford)
Published: Jul. 22, 2021 at 1:14 AM CDT|Updated: Jul. 22, 2021 at 11:59 AM CDT
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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - The Gosper County Sheriff’s Office says a 3-year-old girl drowned at Johnson Lake after a flotation toy she was on overturned.

A news release says that the child, identified as Avery Grace Mendiola, of Lexington, was riding on a flotation toy that had drifted out to the main area of the lake.

Authorities were called around 5:45 p.m. on Wednesday after witnesses said the toy flipped over and the child fell into the water.

Initial reports indicated the child wasn’t wearing a life jacket.

The Lexington Fire and Rescue Dive Team and Nebraska Game and Parks searched the lake, but the search was called off around 10:30 p.m. Wednesday night.

This morning, the search resumed, and the child was found around 7:30 a.m.

An autopsy has been ordered.

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