Bates freshman dies after collapsing on Scotland beach

Posted May 21, 2012, at 9:52 a.m.
Last modified May 21, 2012, at 11:45 a.m.
Evan Dube
Bates photo
Evan Dube

LEWISTON, Maine — A Bates College freshman from New Hampshire collapsed and died after a taking a twilight dip in the ocean while participating in a study-abroad program in Scotland, officials said Monday.

Evan Dube, 19, of Plaistow, N.H., went into the water while he and nine other Bates students were on the beach for a cookout south of Lerwick in the Shetland Islands on Saturday night, police said. He collapsed after returning from the water and was airlifted to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Dube went for a swim shortly after the group arrived at 9 p.m., police said. His friends performed CPR while awaiting help, police said.

Scottish police issued a statement saying the death wasn’t considered suspicious. An autopsy will be performed.

The Bates students were participating in the Shetland Islands Climate and Settlement Project, an archaeological research project funded by the National Science Foundation involving scholars from Bates and other colleges and universities. They had been in Scotland since April 30.

At Bates, more than 200 students, faculty and staff gathered at Perry Atrium on the Lewiston campus for comfort and support Sunday night.

Majoring in classical studies, Dube built upon his high school theatrical resume by playing the role of a cowboy in the Bates production of “Bus Stop.” He also won the competition to become the first new student to recite the Bates mission statement during freshman orientation.

College chaplain Bill Blaine-Wallace recounted how Dube, a Buddhist, bounded into his office, opening the door to a discussion of his religious beliefs.

The dean of students said Dube would be sorely missed.

“We will be absorbing this terrible loss for many days and long into the future,” Tedd Goundie wrote in an email to students.

Dube’s classmates in Scotland are receiving grief counseling and will return to the U.S. as scheduled on Tuesday, the college said.

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