The body of a woman who was found in a submerged car in the North Branch of the Chicago River was identified today as a missing 25-year-old model who had gone missing last week.
An autopsy conducted today also determined that Irma Sabanovic of the 1900 block of West Hood Avenue drowned, but officials could not determine whether the manner of death was accidental, homicide, or suicide.
But a police source said foul play was not suspected.
Sabanovic's body was found in her blue Ford Focus when it was pulled from the river near Goose Island Saturday.
In 1992, cab driver and comedic actor Richard Roman died after his cab plunged into the river at the same intersection, prompting calls for the city to install barriers at the end of Blackhawk Street which leads to the water.
Friends of the woman said she had a "dignified, quiet beauty" and had spread missing person's photos as they searched for the woman.
A community alert issued on May 16 by Chicago police said that Sabanovic was last seen four days prior on her way to a Goose Island night club. A male friend received a text from Sabanovic about 2 a.m., stating that she was lost near Milwaukee Avenue and Erie Street, according to the alert.
On Friday night, friends of Sabanovic, who modeled under the name Ira Blackbird, held a fundraiser for the missing woman at the Little Bucharest Bistro on the Northwest Side.
The car was discovered in the river near Elston Avenue and Blackhawk Street, two blocks from the night spot where Sabanovic was headed.
Sabanovic lived on a quiet, tree-lined street in the West Rogers Park neighborhood that was home to many families from the young woman’s native Bosnia.
Sabanovic had many friends and had been living with her father, Fehim Sabanovic since the woman's mother died of cancer in 2009. Father and daughter had planned to travel to Bosnia Friday to visit family there, friends said.Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun