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Diver dies at site of Madeira shipwreck in Lake Superior

Members of his diving group pulled him up from the bottom of Lake Superior.

A 42-year-old New Hope man died while diving near the site of a famous shipwreck in Lake Superior. 

Aaron Timmerman was diving with a group near the Maderia shipwreck on Saturday afternoon when he surfaced and called for help, the Lake County Sheriff's Office said in a news release

Timmerman went under before anyone could get to him. He was unresponsive when two members of his group pulled him up from the bottom of Lake Superior, the release says. 

When officials got to the scene, people were performing CPR. Timmerman was brought to a medical helicopter, where he was pronounced dead.

It's not clear why Timmerman was in distress. His cause of death will be released by the medical examiner. 

In a post on Facebook, Timmerman's wife wrote he was scuba diving when "something went horribly wrong," adding that "he spent the morning making people smile and laugh." 

A YouCaring page has been set up for Timmerman's family pay for funeral expenses. You can donate here

The Madeira's story 

The Maderia shipwreck is one of the most popular spots for divers in Minnesota. It's located in pretty shallow water, and on clear days you can see parts of the ship from the bluffs above, the Star Tribune says

The Madeira – a cargo ship – sank after hitting Gold Rock, just north of where Split Rock Lighthouse is now located, around 5:30 a.m. in November 1905, the Minnesota Historical Society's website says.

The ship broke into a bunch of pieces, but the shipwreck would have been far more devastating if it wasn't for Fred Benson. 

The crewman grabbed a line and jumped from the deck of the ship to the cliff. He climbed up the cliff and dropped a line, rescuing eight others. 

Only one person died, with the survivors being rescued two days later.

The storm that caused the Maderia – and a bunch of other ships – to sink off the North Shore led to the construction of the Split Rock Lighthouse

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