Dec. 17--A woman visiting from Texas died after she slipped into the Chicago River just east of the Michigan Avenue bridge this morning, police said.
The 30-year-old woman fell into the icy water shortly before 4 a.m. When firefighters and divers arrived, a woman walked along the edge of the river with them, pointing to a spot in the river.
Firefighters put a ladder down near that spot and a diver climbed into the water. The diver's flashlight could be seen shining from under large slabs of ice.
The diver found her and pulled her to the edge of the river around 4:15 a.m. Firefighters waiting on the walkway helped pull her out and placed her into an ambulance, which took her to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 5:20 a.m.
Two boats, one from the Police Marine Unit and one from the Chicago Fire Department, moved slowly through the blocks of ice as the rescue was underway.
A witness, Hailey Barham from Indianapolis, said she was driving when she saw an "hysterical" woman on Michigan Avenue near Wacker Drive intersection screaming for someone to call police.
"We pulled up to this intersection and her friend was hysterical because she needed somebody to call the ambulance," said Barham, 28. "She had been talking to a taxi cab driver and he hadn't called it. So I called the police and they arrived very quickly and probably in 10-15 minutes pulled her out."
Barham said the woman was visiting from Houston with another friend and had been staying at the Omni Hotel on Michigan Avenue. Police confirmed the woman was from Texas.
WGN-TV contributed to this report.
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