CHICAGO (CBS) — The search for a missing teenager in the rough waters of Lake Michigan is now a recovery mission.

Witnesses told CBS 2 a 15-year-old boy was swimming with a group of youngsters Monday afternoon near Diversey Harbor, when the current carried him away. The others tried to save him, but couldn’t pull him to safety.

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Police and Fire department spent almost two hours searching the lake Monday afternoon, before calling off their effort due to the rough conditions in the water.

“I walked over there and there’s maybe eight kids, and two of them was like, attempting like they were going to jump in the water, I guess looking for their buddy – but he was gone,” said witness Dexter Jackson.

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Jackson said the situation was heartbreaking – and one he’d tragically seen play out before.

“This is the second time I’ve witnessed this on the lakefront. The first time was this little bitty boy jumping in the water – these poor kids – they actually found his body,” he said.

The National Weather Service has issued a beach hazards statement through Wednesday morning, due to waves up to 10 feet high, and strong currents making for dangerous swimming conditions.

A Lakeshore Flood Advisory is also in effect for the Illinois side of the lake until noon Tuesday.

The city’s beaches also are closed due to the pandemic, and lifeguards are not on duty.

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CBS 2 Chicago Staff