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Woman dies after lake rescue

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SAYNER, Wis. (WSAU) -- One of the two adults that swam to the rescue of three children has died. Vilas County investigators say 47-year-old Karen Wessel was one of two women that assisted three children on East Star Lake near Sayner Tuesday at 12:40 p.m.

Wessel and an 8-year-old boy went under the water, and were rescued by a friend in a boat. The both went to Howard Young Medical Center, and Wessel was flown to Aspirus Wausau Hospital where she died.

A statement issued by the Vilas County Sheriff's Department says seven people, including Wessel were swimming in the lake when three minors became too tired to continue swimming back from a sandbar. The adults swam out to the minors, but Wessel was overcome with exhaustion.

Wessel's cause of death remains under investigation.

The other woman rescuer and the two other children are safe.

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