Evanston firefighters rescued a windsurfer in distress who had been pushed by the current from Lee Street Beach all the way to Clark Street Beach Thursday night.

The man, who appeared to be about 40 years old, refused medical treatment after being rescued around 8:30 p.m.

Battalion Chief Dan Lynch tells Evanston Now that a witness at Lee Street Beach called to report a windsurfer having difficulties.

City surveillance cameras along the lake confirmed there appeared to be a man in the lake.

As firefighters came from both north and south along the shore, Lynch says he saw the windsurfer in the water at Greenwood Street Beach.

The strong current kept pushing the man, who was bobbing up and down, to Clark Street Beach.

At one point, Lynch says, the individual was 150-200 yards out, drifting closer to shore, but still too far to reach him with a rope.

Firefighters on two jet-ski type craft then went into the lake and pulled the man to safety.

The Chicago Fire Department helicopter, the Coast Guard, and divers from Winnetka and Wilmette were put on alert, but were not needed.

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.

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