Family of Sleepy Hollow swimmer wants answers 11 years after her death


SLEEPY HOLLOW, Ill. — The family of a Sleepy Hollow swimmer who died 11 years ago wants closure.

The remains of a 19-year-old woman who drowned in her family pool, have been exhumed as investigators revisit her death. 

Anna Mary Schneider died July 4, 2009. The competitive swimmer and scuba diver was found in the pool at her family’s Sleepy Hollow home. 

The cause of death was determined to be drowning but the manner of death was undetermined. Her parents questioned her death at the time.

The Kane County coroner’s cold case team exhumed her body last Thursday and performed an autopsy. Schneider was reburied the same day. 

Investigators said they believe they are very close to making a final determination of death in the case. 

Her family spoke exclusively with WGN, and they say they want answers. While officials said she drowned in the pool, the family said she knew how to swim, so that didn’t make sense to them.

Her death makes no sense to her uncle Chuck Frans.

“She was one beautiful child I used to swim with her all the time when she was a baby,” he said. “She loved water. Loved swimming. Very strong competitive swimmer. She has a huge trophies case hundreds of trophies from competitive swimming. There’s no way you can drown a fish.”

Frans hopes the Kane County Coroner’s Office will find they answers they need.  

“That makes me very excited at the fact that maybe we can get some closure as a family,” he said. “Nothing is going to bring Anna back.”

Rob Russell, the Kane County coroner was not the coroner at the time of her death. But looking over the evidence, he felt there are many holes in the case.

“The statements that were made there were inconsistent to the science,” Russell said. “We are looking into possible explanations for that.”

He would not go into details because this is all still under investigation, but he said he’s hopeful with the information that they have the truth will finally come out.

The coroner wanted to be very clear, his office isn’t looking into the criminal side of this case. His investigators are only looking into how that young woman died.


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