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Joliet Man, 20, Who Ran into a Lake While Fleeing Police Officers Dies of Injuries

Andrew Banaski was pulled unconscious from the water Tuesday and died four days later at Provena St. Joseph Medical Center.

The 20-year-old man who ran into a lake while fleeing has died, according to the Will County coroner's office.

Andrew M. Banaski, of 3904 Hennepin Drive, , died at in Joliet Saturday, four days after police pulled him unconscious from the lake behind homes in the 3400 block of Lake Shore Drive.

Police were attempting to arrest Banaski shortly after 1:30 p.m. Tuesday on a misdemeanor charge of possession of drug paraphernalia and on a warrant for assault, also a misdemeanor. It's not clear why Banaski would have run from police, although he has done so in the past, Joliet police Cmdr. Al Roechner said.

Police are awaiting the results of an autopsy, but it's speculated that Banaski may have gotten caught in the lake weeds and started to drown. One of the pursuing officers swam out to rescue him and CPR was performed when they got Banaski to shore, Roechner said.

There is no truth to rumors that police used a Taser while pursuing Banaski into the water. Roechner said the officer who rescued him had to remove all of his equipment before going in to save him.

According to Banaski's obituary, published online by the in Plainfield, he was born in Evergreen Park and formerly lived in Romeoville.

His visitation is Wednesday at the funeral home and his funeral will be Saturday in Caney, Ky.

Agrippina Minor June 24, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Having had the misfortune to at one time be married to someone in law enforcement, and having first hand witnessed the culture of abuse and control so pervasive within the ol' boys club; I, too, would prefer to drown in a lake than have to deal with them.
Curtis June 25, 2012 at 12:13 AM
Andrew Miles Masa (Banaski) is the son of Curtis and Tracey Masa (Banaski). Not Edward and Tracey Banaski. My ex refused to notify me of my sone injuries and I had found out through the newspaper. I was REFUSED entry to see my dying son and tell him that I loved him for the last time. I have his birth certificate and his birth announcement to prove this ! I have dealt with this horrble situation for many many years and I believe this is why my son had such a difficult life.. Andrew I love you ! Anyone interested in the real information just please look up Curt Masa, Miles Masa or Andrew (banaski) Masa on facebook and you will see the truth. It's disgusting to be denied access to my son side upon his death or to be excluded from his funeral and obituary. Siblings Alex, Kevin, Jordan, Jeremy, Jenna, Jonah, Dale. Son of Curtis Masa and Grandson to Claudia Anderson. No wonder why my son had so many problems, I'm sure everyone can see this for themselves !
David Masa June 25, 2012 at 12:44 AM
Andrew was my cousin and because of circumstances I don't understand, I haven't seen him in about ten years. I love him and miss him. He and ALL of his family are in our prayers.
Claudia Anderson June 25, 2012 at 01:45 AM
The obituary for Andrew from the funeral home was a complete lie. Andrew was the son of Curtis M. Masa and Tracey Masa Banaski, not Edward Banaski. I am his grandmother and have put up with Tracey's lies for 22 years . We are a greiving family.We are being excluded from his wake and just as we were excluded from the rest of his life.He had brothers and a sister who were eliminated from the obit.It is disgusting to have known Tracey and her deceptive ways.She kept him from his son in life and now in death. Andrew hated his step-father.Tracey told Curt that he could see Andrew in the hospital and then signed an order not allowing him to see Andrew.
Laura Shanahan June 25, 2012 at 01:51 AM
I too am Andrews cousin. This is so hard on his father (Curt Masa) and ALL of the family. It is unfortunate that nothing is being mentioned about his fathers side of the family and i wish that we could have been able to spend more time with him than what was allowed. I love you andrew.
Jerry June 25, 2012 at 02:35 AM
Just a couple observations: First, very sorry for the loss this young man's family has suffered. Second, I cannot for the life of me fathom what is to be gained by this family airing their dirty laundry in a forum such as this. Finally, and this may be cold, but this man was 20 years old...an adult...and it has been several years since his mother had the legal ability to "keep him" from anyone. If he wasn't having a relationship with certain members of his family at this point it was his choice...not the doing of others. Before anyone answers me with the usual, " you don't know the whole story" or "you have no right to judge anyone"' remember it was you (his"family") that invited perfect strangers to have and express an opinion when you chose to put your family's disfunctions on display.
Tabatha June 25, 2012 at 03:09 AM
Let me start by offering condolences to the Masa Family. The loss of a son, grandson, and brother is a pain no family needs to bear. Now to Jerry-Yes the family did invite people to comment on this situation but they did not invite people to be negative in their comments. No you don't know the whole story, but to answer your comments -- Yes, Andrew was a 20 year old man - an adult - and as far as keeping him from his father, this was done at the hospital while Andrew lay connected to life support. His mother choose to have security block his father from saying goodbye to his son. So, THIS WAS NOT HIS CHOICE!!!! May you should read the comments throughly before you decide to give your input. As for the way his mother is handling this situation it is wrong and immoral. She denied a father and son their last moments together. She is denying the family to ability to even say a final goodbye at the wake and funeral. And as a further slap in the face to Grandmother, Father, and siblings she denied them in the obituary. This is no way to honor a young man's memory. May everyone thoughts and prayers be with the Masa Family as they go through this tragic time.
Katy June 25, 2012 at 06:54 AM
I was blessed with the chance to meet and get to know Andrew and to see first hand how much Andrew loved and missed having his father, Curt Masa, in his life. Andrew told me on several occasions that he hated his step father and that they had a horrible relationship. The choices that were made for Andrew as child are what made him into the man he was...forever trying to fill the void of the father he was denied by the choice of his mother. Sadly, even now she is making the choice to deny Andrew the "I love you" and "I miss you" that he so desperately wanted and needed...and all just to hurt the one man who never stopped loving Andrew, who never gave up on Andrew...his father, Curt Masa.
chris June 25, 2012 at 12:15 PM
I did not know Andrew but my son and his child hood friends excepted him into their tight group of friends in a month they got so close the boys were by his side a much as they could be I'm sorry that Curt Masa and his family were cut out of his life I'm sure from what I know of Andrew he loved his family we were praying for him when he was in the hospital and now we will be praying for his whole family. I am so sorry for your loss she can't ban you from the burial just stand away from her she has no control over the cemetery Curt if you would like more info on the hospital email me with Andrew in the subject line at meanmom25@hotmail.com God bless you and your family.
Tracey June 25, 2012 at 04:17 PM
I am so sorry that you are feeling the guilt of not being in Andrew's life. I hope you find comfort blaming me. It takes more to be a father then a piece of paper. You chose to sign off your rights many years ago and chose not be a part of both of our boys lives. Even after Andrew coming to you after High School to get know you, you still couldn't be a father to him (you know what I mean). This is not the time to play the blame game, Andrew would not want that. Please let him rest in peace and know that he is in a better place. He will have no more pain or worries any more. I know the pain that you are feeling, but remember I have been right there with him the whole time through his short stay here on earth. I have those cheerhised memories and will hold onto them. I was not dening your time to grieve, or say good-bye as you stated. Like I stated to your mother, my number one priorty was Andrew. Let Andrew know that even though he is gone from this earth, that he will always be in so many peoples hearts. He was loved by so many. Let go of the anger, GUILT and blame for not being there. Andrew had a big heart and anyone who REALLY knew Andrew knows that he is a forgiving person. As for the rest of the Masa family, just because Curt signed off his rights (which I did not twist his arm to do so. HIS CHOICE) did not mean that the rest of you had to exclude him or his brother from your lives. I can only hope that you all find peace from your guilt.
Curtis June 25, 2012 at 04:18 PM
To Jerry, "Airing our dirty laundry", I am trying to make every attempt to see my son and tell him goodbye for the last time. I want the record to state the truth about my son and deserve the right for my side of the family to be included in his obituary, funeral and death (by paying our respects. I love my son and miss him very much. Andrews mother, Tracey Banaski did have security keep me from telling my son goodbye, anyway you look at that it was wrong and anyone can see that. My son as of Wednesday is being taken out of state and being buried on a remote mountain site ( I know this property because I went there with my ex wife when her grandfather died), privately owned and the way to enter is through his mothers side of the families property. I will never again get to even grieve by my son side beit in the hospital, funeral home or gravesite. I think my son deserves much more then he has received and to have all the people who love him pay their respects to him. What kind of monster would keep a father from telling his dying son "I love you" ? My son was very sweet and deserved more and I will do everything in my power to see that he receives, even if this is the only forum I can use to do that. Grieving Father
Curtis June 26, 2012 at 02:10 AM
How disgusting do you have to be to keep a boys real father from telling his son "I love you" before he is pulled off life support, then ignore him from the obituary and funeral then his grave. Although you are correct, A piece of PAPER does not include or exclude someone from being a father. Only a heartless excuse for a human being would do such a thing.
David Masa June 26, 2012 at 02:33 AM
I do feel guilty. I'm not getting involved in this. Goodbye Andrew, I wish I had known you more.
Tracey June 26, 2012 at 03:11 AM
Just PLEASE let him rest in peace. Andrew would not want all this. Thank you David and I know in my heart that Andrew would not hold any grudges. He is the most forgiving person I know and he has such a big heart!!!! He is loved by many and will be greatly missed. He will forever remain in my heart. This is hard enough without all this, but like I said, if it makes others feel better to play the blame game. Just so you know, I contacted your Grandma with the funeral arrangements before they posted it. I also talked to her in the hospital when she called asking about Andrew. Sorry but my thoughts were with Andrew, not them.
Laura Shanahan June 26, 2012 at 04:25 AM
This is all ridiculous! Enough of this arguing. Andrew would not it and it is disrespectful to him. I did built a relationship with andrew when he was living by me. We hung out and he looked up to me and tried to get help by hanging out with me. Unfortunately, he moved back with his mom and ed, and i didnt keep in contact like i should have. However, i believe that it was extremely wrong on tracys part of not including all of andrews family in on the obituary. Just because you and curt dont get along doesnt mean you have to disrespect andrew and his fathers side of the family by excluding us from from his obituary and funeral. I am staying out of this from now on. I am not going to disrespect my cousin. He would not want this. If anything, he would want everyone to at least get along for his visitation and funeral. Rip Andrew. I love you.
Claudia June 26, 2012 at 06:02 AM
Thank you Chris
Observer June 26, 2012 at 05:12 PM
First, Let me say how sorry I am for this whole family for this horrible loss. Losing a child is the hardest thing in life to deal with. Second, I was in the lobby of the hospital when this man came in to see his son and I over heard the conversation with security officers. "Curt" was told that a restriction was signed not allowing him to visit with his son. I even heard the security officer tell him "give me your number and we will call you", I thought how cruel. There are many fathers out there who do not care about their chldren, I don't know the history but the man obviously cared enough for his son to come see him (not to mention, he was visibly upset). All I can say is that my heart goes out to this family, the entire family for the pain and loss of their child. No one should ever have to go through this type of pain.
Claudia June 26, 2012 at 07:46 PM
Observer, Thank you so much for taking the time to post this.
becca June 27, 2012 at 08:51 PM
Andrew and my older brother Brandon used to be really good friends. He stayed by ny house numerous amounts of times. Despite some of the choices Andrew made throught his life it did NOT make him less of a person. He was an incredible man and friend. He had such a big heart. to ALL of his family, I am so sorry for your loss. Andrew, i love you and will never ever forget you.<3
Claudia June 28, 2012 at 06:11 AM
Thank you Becca. Tonight I was at his wake and it was so sad seeing my nephew like that. May his sole rest in piece. You will always be in my heart. I love you
nicole sill October 30, 2012 at 02:26 PM
i am one of andrews family member and i believe this whole thing as not andrew fault, i blame the cops. andrew didnt do nothing wrong at alll . whoever got sommething mean to say they can take it up with someone else because we dont want to hear it i was ther at his wake and it was tearfull. so as i ask please do not talk mean about andrew

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