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Clarion University Student Drowns While Swimming in New York

Friday, June 18, 2021 @ 02:06 PM

Posted by Aly Delp

Jacob MinnickCLARION, Pa. (EYT) – A Clarion University student and member of the Clarion men’s swimming and diving team tragically passed away while swimming in New York on Thursday.

According to WHEC News, the incident occurred around 3:45 p.m. at Indian Falls in the Pembroke, New York area, and involved 18-year-old Jacob Minnick, a native of Lockport, New York.

Minnick reportedly jumped into the water at Indian Falls and didn’t resurface. Several bystanders then jumped in and attempted to find him but were unsuccessful.

His body was recovered just before 6:00 p.m. by the Water Rescue Team from the City of Batavia Fire Department and the Dive Team from Alden Fire Department.

He was subsequently declared deceased at the scene.

A release from Clarion University’s Athletics Department states Minnick had just completed his first year of study at Clarion and was an active member of the Golden Eagle team.

“Jacob was a very sincere, polite, happy, caring kid,” said Clarion University Diving Coach Dave Hrovat. “In the time I got to know him, it was easy to see that he loved training with his teammates and loved being part of the program. He had a bright future ahead of him, athletically and academically. I want to express my heartfelt condolences to all his family and loved ones, and let them know that we are there for them in this tremendously difficult time.”

“Jacob had a smiling, bright-eyed face every day walking on the pool deck,” said Head Swimming & Diving Coach Bree Kelley. “He enjoyed his teammates and Clarion, and we were excited to see him progress through our program. We are surely going to miss that smiling face. We will be offering counseling services for our team if they should need it, but in the meantime, our team will stand together to support one another through this tough loss.”

Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Dr. Wendy Snodgrass added, “We are extremely saddened to learn of the passing of Jacob.

“He was an important and valued member of our men’s swimming and diving program, and quickly developed strong bonds with his teammates and coaches. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and everyone who knew and loved him.”

Clarion President Dale-Elizabeth Pehrsson, Ed.D. extended the university’s deepest sympathy to Jacob’s family, friends, teammates, and the faculty and staff in the Clarion community who knew him.

“Any loss of life is a tragedy, but the grief cuts especially deep as we mourn a young man who had accomplished so much and had so much more to give,” Pehrsson said.

Minnick recently completed his first year as a member of the Golden Eagle men’s swimming & diving program and was a Biology/Ecology major. A freshman at Clarion University and graduate of Lockport High School, Minnick did not compete during the 2020-21 season but was an integral part of the team during their training schedule. One of the top divers in the history of Lockport High School, he was a three-time state meet qualifier in high school, with a number of section championships to his credit. He placed 14th at the state meet as a junior and 16th as a senior.

Information regarding memorial services is not available at this time.

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