SHELBYVILLE -  Memorial Day weekend is the kickoff to the tourism summer season for Shelby County. Each year, Lake Shelbyville attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors to its beautiful beaches, tributaries and waterways for swimming, boating and fishing. HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital (GSS) often sees some of these visitors in the emergency department because of an unhappy accident. 

Here are some timely statistics provided by the US Coast Guard. More than 50% of drowning victims never intended to be in the water. Worldwide, there are more than two persons drowning a minute. Of those numbers, half are children between the ages of two and four years old. In the water, these young children are at the highest at risk of any age group.
Shelby County Dive Team Commander, GSS would like to remind everyone of some best practices in and around water.

  • Closely monitor children.

  • Swim with a buddy.

  • Do not swim beyond your ability.

  • Controlled areas such as a beach or a pool are safer than open water.

  • Know the depth, currents and debris of your environment.

  • Rivers are remote, with limited access and greater currents.

  • Hypothermia is created when water conducts heat away from the body. Water does this 25 times faster than air.

  • Personal floatation devices (PFDs), also known as life jackets, should be U.S. Coast Guard approved.

  • PFDs greatly enhance safety in the water, provide impact protection and help to enhance visibility.

  • There are many styles of PFDs from which to choose.

Kayaks have become increasingly popular. It is important to remember that a kayak sits low in the water which can make it a for poor visibility. S a brightly colored kayak may help. It is also important to hone one’s skills in a safe area before moving to open water or moving water because the mobility of a kayak is much less than a boat.
GSS Emergency Department Manager Michael Queary said, “We want everyone to enjoy our gorgeous lake and have a wonderful time. We don’t want anyone to get hurt, but should an accident happen, we are here to help you 24/7 all year long.”
About HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital
Since its inception in 1916, HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital in Shelbyville (GSS) has been dedicated to excellence in healthcare for those living and visiting their communities. GSS has accomplished this by providing comprehensive health services and meeting the needs of patients served through their compassionate care, business integrity and community responsibility. GSS provides a 24/7 emergency department that is fully staffed by physicians and highly-trained nurses, and also features inpatient and outpatient services, including a 24-hour laboratory and an imaging department that meets today’s highest standards for diagnostic imaging technology. GSS has an advanced surgery department and an acute inpatient care unit. Dedicated to being a hometown hospital, GSS’ home health and rehabilitation departments are committed to excellence with a team of professional nurses and therapists providing a variety of medical services and rehabilitative therapies, all designed to help patients heal in their own environment. The group of visiting specialists in the outpatient clinic works closely with GSS to help keep the healthcare services local even if a specialized procedure or exam is required. GSS strives to be the first choice for the community’s healthcare needs. For more information about HSHS Good Shepherd Hospital, visit   
About Hospital Sisters Health System
Hospital Sisters Health System’s (HSHS) mission is to reveal and embody Christ’s healing love for all people through our high quality Franciscan health care ministry. HSHS provides state-of-the-art health care to our patients and is dedicated to serving all people, especially the most vulnerable, at each of our 15 local systems and physician practices in Illinois (Breese, Decatur, Effingham, Greenville, Highland, Litchfield, O’Fallon, Shelbyville and Springfield) and Wisconsin (Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Oconto Falls, Sheboygan and two in Green Bay).  HSHS is sponsored by Hospital Sisters Ministries, and Hospital Sisters of St. Francis is the founding institute. For more information about HSHS, visit For more information about Hospital Sisters of St. Francis,

Media Contact

Andrew Dilbeck

HSHS Illinois
Office: 217-464-5610

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