A father and daughter died on Sunday afternoon, March 15, when their enclosed UTV broke through the ice on the Chippewa River.
The deceased were identified as John D. Custer, 74, of rural Holcombe, and Jennifer M. Custer, 39, of rural Holcombe, according to the Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office.
At 4:50 p.m. on Sunday, a witness, in the township of Lake Holcombe (Holcombe Flowage), saw the UTV go through the ice about 40 feet from shore and called 911. Chippewa County sheriff’s deputies, Cornell Fire and EMS, Chippewa Falls EMS and dive team, Department of Natural Resources wardens and Mayo and Life Link III helicopters responded to the location on Lake Holcombe, west of 270th Avenue.
The dive team located the man and woman inside the enclosed UTV in 20 feet of water on the river bottom. Both were transported to Mayo hospital in Eau Claire and were later pronounced deceased.
The Chippewa County Sheriff’s Office urged people to be extremely cautious on the ice as the weather continues to warm up.