67-Year-Old Man Dies, Another Injured in Wilmette Harbor Boat Explosion

A man has died after a boat explosion took place in Wilmette Harbor Saturday morning, according to the Wilmette Fire Department.

The man was identified as 67-year-old Mitchell Sroka by the Cook County Medical Examiner on Saturday night. 

Officials, including the U.S. Coast Guard and Wilmette police, responded to the north suburban harbor around 8 a.m. Saturday.

Wilmette Fire Chief Ben Wozney said upon arrival, crews found a boat on fire attached to the fueling dock at the Sheridan Shores Yacht Club. The fire was extinguished and the boat was completely submerged, according to Wozney.

A video captures moments after a boat exploded in Wilmette Harbor, killing a 60-year-old man and injuring another.

A local salvage company has now pulled the boat from the water, and police are still investigating the incident. 

Sroke was found unresponsive as a result of the incident, and another man, 74, resident of Arlington Heights, was transported to Evanston Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, authorities said.

Investigators still have not determined how the explosion happened, and the state fire marshal is on the scene assisting with the investigation. 

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