On Monday, October 21, 2019 at 5:08 a.m., the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call reporting a body floating in the Mississippi River at Miller’s Landing, located on Marina Road.
This location is north of Savanna, Illinois, across from the Mississippi Palisades State Park north entrance.
Emergency personnel responded, and the body was removed from the river. The body was identified as 71-year-old Curtis H. Petersen of Park Forest, Illinois. Curtis was pronounced dead by the Carroll County Coroner’s Office.
Preliminary investigation shows Petersen was alone while attempting to travel to his residence in Lake Forest. Petersen became lost and was traveling west on Marina Road.
Marina Road is a dead-end road that only travels a short distance to a boat launch and parking area.
It appears that Petersen, who suffers from dementia, became confused and accidentally drove into the Mississippi River.
He was eventually located by subjects who were launching their boat into the river.
The Savanna Fire Department and Illinois State Conservation Police conducted a lengthy search of the river and eventually located the vehicle that had been driven by Petersen. The Scales Mound-Galena dive team assisted with removing the vehicle from the river.
The Savanna Police Department, Savanna Ambulance, Savanna Fire Department, Illinois State Conservation Police, Scales Mound Fire Department, Galena Fire Department and J&S Towing assisted the Sheriff’s Office.
The incident remains under investigation. No further information is being released.