Lakefront backflip ends in tragedy

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A night of lakefront fun ended in tragedy Sunday when a game of one-upmanship took the life of a 54-year old man from the city’s west side.

 ( Family photo )  Terrence Mauldin, 54, of the Austin neighborhood, was pronounced dead at Northwestern Memorial Hospital after hitting his head while attempting a back-flip at a beach in the Gold Coast neighborhood.
( Family photo )
Terrence Mauldin

Terrence Mauldin was along North Avenue Beach around 7 pm when his 27-year old nephew did a backflip.  Relatives describe the uncle as an athletic, high-spirited “joke teller”’ who “loved to laugh” and wanted to show that he could do one too.

Mauldin climbed a three-foot retaining wall to launch his backflip before friends and family.  Missing his mark, Maudlin hit the concrete head-first, according to police.  He did not survive.

His son, 27-year old Ernest Hardaway of Country Club Hills told the Chicago Tribune, “This is just too much. It’s ridiculous. It’s heartbreaking.”

Ernest added,  “It’s so sad.  He was the thrill of all of us in the family. He brought laughter to the family.”

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