CHICAGO (CBS)– The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office reported the 19th cold-related death of the season.
The first death due to cold exposure for the season was reported on Oct. 30 and the latest death was reported on Jan. 26.
Among the 19 cold-related deaths was Esther Jung, 12, of Elk Grove Village, who died of asphyxia and hypothermia.
Esther and her 9-year-old friend were playing outside in the snow on Jan. 21 while their families were attending church services at Rothem Church, in the 100 block of East College Drive in Arlington Heights, when a makeshift snow fort, which the girls had built in the snowbanks, collapsed on top of them.
The girls were transported to Northwest Community Hospital, where Esther was pronounced dead at 4:30 p.m.
Esther’s friend was released from the hospital three days later.
According to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office, 47 deaths due to cold exposure were reported between Oct. 1, 2017 and April 1, 2018.