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2 University Crew Club Members Die in Accident

3 other Iowa State students were rescued from lake
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 29, 2021 3:26 PM CDT
2 Iowa State Students Die in Boating Accident
Law enforcement gather near a boat ramp on Little Wall Lake in Iowa's Hamilton County.   (Kelsey Kremer/The Des Moines Register via AP)

Two Iowa State University Crew Club members died after their boat capsized Sunday morning—and Hamilton County Sheriff Doug Timmons says it could have been an even bigger tragedy if residents near Little Wall Lake hadn't raced to rescue other students. "We had some heroes in the people who live in the houses here," the sheriff said, per CNN. "There's some people who took some risks they didn't have to take and saved some lives." Officials say three students from the five-person crew were rescued, treated in a local hospital, and released, the Des Moines Register reports. The body of one student was recovered by a dive team Sunday and that of the second student was found after the search resumed Monday morning.

Timmons said he didn't know if the students had been wearing lifejackets or whether they were required to, the Ames Tribune reports. "That part is still under investigation," he told reporters Monday. The university said in a statement Monday that the university police force is working with the sheriff's office and state agencies to investigate the accident. "We know there are a lot of questions and we are working to provide answers, but this will take time," said Senior Vice President for Student Affairs Toyia Younger. Roger Fritz, who lives near the lake, says it was frozen over until three weeks ago. He says the lake was "pretty rough" Sunday and he believes the crew boat "probably got swamped in some heavier waves." (Read more Iowa stories.)

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