Chicago Area Swimmer Dies After Club Activity

Jared Anderson
by Jared Anderson 2

November 19th, 2016 Club, News

A 17-year-old in Chicago suburb Vernon Hills died this week of undetermined natural causes after a swim club activity.

The Chicago Tribune reports that Josh Church died on Wednesday, November 16. Church was taking part in an activity with the Cats Aquatic Team at Vernon Hills High School. Church was also a junior at nearby Warren Township High School.

The Vernon Hills Police Department says officers responded to a rescue call at the school, arriving just before 8 PM. Church had been found unresponsive on the floor of a locker room. He was transported to a local medical center, but was pronounced dead just over an hour later, at 8:53 PM, according to The Daily Herald.

The county coroner said that Church did not drown. An autopsy the next day showed no signs of drugs or alcohol. County coroner Robert James termed it “a natural congenital death.” Per the Chicago Tribune, James said “It’s a natural congenital death…. It’s apparently something that happened at a microscopic level.”

The Daily Herald reports that a crisis team has been set up for students needing support after Church’s passing.

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Riley Lehmann

Josh was a junior at Warren.


So sad. A friend of mine died the same way. He was also 17 and he was a healthy active teenager. Played lots of sports. In fact he collapsed while playing tennis with his brother. Dr. gave very similar diagnosis.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson just can’t stay away from the pool. A competitive career of almost two decades wasn’t enough for this Minnesotan, who continues to get his daily chlorine fix. A lifelong lover of writing, Jared now combines the two passions as Senior Reporter for, covering swimming at every level. He’s an …

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