MADISON (WKOW) -- The University of Wisconsin-Madison issued a statement Thursday afternoon stating the UW community is deeply saddened by the loss Richard de la Cruz, a student who died in an apparent accidental drowning in Lake Mendota Wednesday, Aug. 21.
The 20-year-old, of Wauwatosa, was swimming with two friends around 3:00 p.m. Wednesday near the Porter Boathouse along the Lake Mendota shoreline. He began struggling and went underwater. Students on shore immediately attempted to rescue him.
UW-Madison Police responded, as well as emergency crews and divers, led by Madison Fire and Rescue. At 5:30 p.m., the Dane County Sheriff's dive team continued the search with his body recovered around 6:40 p.m.
Richard de la Cruz was a transfer student from Marquette University, new to UW-Madison.
"We offer our thoughts to his friends and family during this difficult time," says Dean of Students Lori Berquam. "It is an unimaginable loss and one that comes just before the start of a new school year."
The most recent student drowning in Lake Mendota was almost a year ago when John "Vietnam" Nguyen died.
UW offers counseling support, for students, through the University Health Services Counseling and Consultation Services.
MADISON (WKOW) --- The Dane County Medical Examiner's Office has identified the swimmer who died in Lake Mendota as Richard L. de la Cruz, 20, of Madison.
Preliminary results of the autopsy are consistent with an accidental drowning.
Additional testing is underway.
The case is still under investigation by the UW Police Department and the Dane County Medical Examiner's Office.
MADISON (WKOW) --- UW Madison Police confirm the body pulled from Lake Mendota Wednesday night is a 20-year-old student.
No name is being released at this time.
Divers recovered the body around 7 p.m.
Two other swimmers were with the student around 3:30 p.m. when they noticed the man was missing.
We will continue to update you on this story on WKOW.com and on 27 News at 5 & 6.
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