Vigil held for woman swept into Lake Michigan; 2018 is lake’s deadliest year on record

CHICAGO —Family and close friends held a candlelight vigil on the shores of Lake Michigan Sunday night, near where a 24-year-old woman was swept into its waters and never seen again.

Candles, roses and tears were laid down near North Avenue Beach for Eddisa Geecely Concepcion, lovingly known as Dee Dee, who was last seen as she made her way into the lake around 7:15 a.m. Friday.

"She was loved because she was an amazing, beautiful human being," her mother Maria Centeno said.

Until she hears otherwise, Centeno said she is holding out hope her daughter will be found and will be okay.

When Dee Dee jumped into Lake Michigan with two male friends, its treacherous waves were eight feet high at times. While they all struggled to emerge from the waters, rescue workers were able to locate and save her friends because they were closer to shore. Divers were unable to search for Dee Dee because it was too dangerous at the time.

So far in 2018, 42 people have died in Lake Michigan, making it the deadliest year on record.

Friends Jessica and Joceline said Dee Dee was little but fierce, and always adventurous. She'd texted them that morning that she planned on jumping into Lake Michigan.

"Anyone that knows her knows this was an accident," Ramirez said.

Dee was a graduate student at UIC, and worked at a nonprofit helping people buy homes. She wrote poetry.

While the streets lights glistened on the lake’s calm waters, her family and friends said a prayer, and released floating lanterns into the night.

"She was the freest spirit you’ll ever meet. She loved. She loved hard," her mother  Maria Centeno said.

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