Mother dies when attempting to rescue children at N.J. beach

File photo. (Justin Auciello/WHYY)

File photo. (Justin Auciello/WHYY)

A Pennsylvania woman vacationing with her family at the New Jersey shore drowned while trying to rescue her three children from rough waters, authorities said.

Emergency responders responded to the 18th Street Beach in North Wildwood around 3 p.m. Tuesday after receiving reports of swimmers in distress.

Fire Chief Dominick J. McClain told NJ.com that the 49-year-old mother, whose name has not been released, entered the water after she called out for her children to return to shore and saw that they were in distress.

She rescued two boys, ages 8 and 10, “from the breakers” and brought them to shore, McClain said, adding that her 19-year-old daughter was struggling and she attempted to save her.

Rescuers quickly arrived and rescued the teenager, but her mother was soon found face down about 150 yards off the shoreline.

The woman was taken to a hospital, but she was pronounced dead there a short time later. The children were not injured.

No lifeguards were on duty, NJ.com reported. The National Weather Service advised of a moderate risk of rip current development on Tuesday.

Authorities said the family was from Wernersville, but their names were not released. Authorities said the incident remains under investigation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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