12-year-old girl dies after snow fort collapse

Credit: Scott Olson

Credit: Scott Olson

A 12-year-old girl died Sunday afternoon after a snow fort that she and a friend were making outside of an Illinois church fell on top of them, according to multiple reports.

The 12-year-old girl and her 9-year-old friend were attending services at Rothem Church in Arlington Heights when they went outside around 2:40 p.m. to play in the snow, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

After an hour passed without the girls' return, family members left the church to search for them. They found the girls buried in snow, according to the Chicago Tribune. It was not immediately clear how long the girls were in the snow before they were found.

Authorities rushed the girls to Northwest Community Hospital, where the 12-year-old was pronounced dead, WGN-TV reported. Doctors treated the 9-year-old girl for hypothermia and held her for observation, but Arlington Heights police Sgt. Charles Buczynski told the Sun-Times that she was expected to survive.

"This appears to be a tragic accident," Buczynski said, according to the Tribune.

Authorities continue to investigate.

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