Joanna Bradley v. Indiana Dunes Lakeshore

Author: Gerald M. Dworkin
Date: September 17, 2014



On July 19, 2012, the Bradley party of thirteen adults and children arrived at West Beach at approximately 1:30 PM and set up on the beach just to the west of the center lifeguard stand.

Water conditions that day consisted of approximately one-foot waves with poor water visibility due to weather conditions the previous day. Swimming activity was reported as light with approximately 25 swimmers.

Shortly before 4:00 PM, Lifeguards Kallimani and Spiegel were relieved by Lifeguards Groenewold and Rose, in order to begin physical training. Around that same time, the Bradley party began packing up to leave the beach. Peter Bradley, Nascere’s uncle, returned to the water to get stragglers out of the water and have them gather their belongings. When the Bradley party realized that Nascere was missing, Peter Bradley and Breonka Garrott began searching in the water while other members of the family left the beach.

When group members were unable to find Nascere, Rosemary Bradley called to the lifeguards that one of the group’s children was missing. It is reported that the lifeguards did nothing.

At approximately 4:01 PM, Lifeguards Rose and Groenewold heard a woman yelling about a missing child. While Rose interviewed the family, Groenewold initiated contact with INDU Dispatch. Kallimani and Spiegel heard the radio traffic and returned to the beach area. The lifeguards treated this report as a missing child, rather than as a missing bather and no immediate search of the water was initiated at that time by any of the lifeguards.

At approximately 4:09 PM, Peter Bradley found and retrieved Nascere from the water, at which point the lifeguards then responded and initiated CPR. According to Lifeguard Kallimani, however, he reached Nascere at the same time that Peter Bradley did.

At approximately 4:09 PM, according to the lifeguards, Lifeguard Kallimani located Nascere unconscious in the water and reached him at the same time as Peter Bradley. Kallimani and Rose commenced CPR, later assisted by Groenewold and Spiegel. Lifeguard Groenewold alerted INDU Dispatch of a 5-year-old needing an ambulance, but no reason was given. Approximately two minutes later, Lifeguard Spiegel advised INDU Dispatch that a 5-year-old is unconscious. And, approximately 4 minutes later, Lifeguard Spiegel advised INDU Dispatch that the 5-year-old is a drowning victim.

At 4:11 PM, INDU Dispatch notified the lifeguards that EMS was approaching their location. Portage Fire and Rescue Ambulance entered West Beach and INDU Dispatch directed the lifeguards to start removing the patient from the beach to the West Beach Bathhouse for transport. The lifeguards then began removing Nascere Bradley, carrying him on a long backboard, while performing CPR with an AED attached. The lifeguards carried Nascere up the beach, up the steps and through the West Beach Bathhouse, where they were intercepted first by Ranger Martinez and then by Portage Fire and Rescue personnel.

At 4:18 PM, Portage Fire and Rescue personnel took over care of the patient and continued providing BLS and ALS care prior to transport.

At approximately 4:30 PM, Portage Fire and Rescue Ambulance transported Nascere to Methodist Hospital North Lake Campus in Gary, Indiana.

At approximately 6:09 PM, Nascere was transported via Air Methods Helicopter to the University of Chicago Corner Children’s Hospital.

At 9:54 PM, Nascere was pronounced deceased.

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