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14-year-old girl drowns at water park

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A 14-year-old girl died Tuesday evening after she was pulled from the water at an Ohio theme park, officials said.

Police were called to the Land of Illusion Aqua Adventure Park in Middletown after the teen went under water and did not surface, the Butler County Sheriff's Office said.

a sign in the middle of a field © WCPO

The sheriff's office said in a press release that the girl went under at about 5 p.m. and she wasn't located until a half hour later.

The victim was identified by authorities as Mykiara Jones.

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Mykiara was airlifted to Dayton Children's Hospital, where she later died, police and other officials said.


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"This is a tragedy no parent should have to endure," Butler County Sheriff Richard Jones said in a statement. "These are the calls first responders dread and have difficulty dealing with. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family."

An investigation is ongoing.

a sign in the middle of a field: Mykiara Jones, 14, drowned while at Land of Illusion Aqua Adventures in Middleton, Ohio, on July 20, 2021. It took first responders 30 minutes to find her in the pool. © WCPO Mykiara Jones, 14, drowned while at Land of Illusion Aqua Adventures in Middleton, Ohio, on July 20, 2021. It took first responders 30 minutes to find her in the pool.

In a statement released on its Facebook page, Land of Illusion's owners said it closed down the water park and is cooperating with investigators to determine what happened.

"We ask that you join us in sending thoughts and prayers and our deepest condolences to our guest's family and friends, as well as to the team members and guests who were onsite last evening during this tragedy," the owners said.

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Those who knew Mykiara began reacting to the tragedy on Wednesday.

"Mykiara was just a great student, and she was a great human being," Jennifer King, Mykiara's teacher in middle school, told Cincinnati ABC affiliate WCPO. "I'm truly saddened this happened because she could have done anything she wanted in life."

The Middletown School District put out a statement alerting the community about Mykiara's death.

an empty parking lot in front of a building: Mykiara Jones, a 14-year-old who was set to attend Middletown High School in Middletown, Ohio, this fall drowned at a water park Tuesday, July 20, 2021. © Google Maps Street View Mykiara Jones, a 14-year-old who was set to attend Middletown High School in Middletown, Ohio, this fall drowned at a water park Tuesday, July 20, 2021.

Superintendent Marlon Styles said Mykiara was going to be a freshman at Middletown High School in the fall and the teen's mother worked in the school system.

"We will be wrapping our arms around her during this extremely difficult time," Styles said of Mykiara's mother.

The school provided students, faculty and other members with information on counseling services.

"We extend our deepest sympathy and prayers to the family, friends, and teachers of Mykiara. We pray the family finds peace and comfort during this difficult time," Styles said.

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