A recent graduate of two Minnesota universities has died after being pulled from a river in Italy.
Reports from Italian media state that Blair John, 28, a native of the Bahamas, was pulled from the Po River in the northern Italy city of Turin.
The Italian Insider reports that the discovery was made days after the body of his 29-year-old friend Alrae Ramsey, a diplomat at the Bahamas Embassy, was pulled from the same river in a different location.
They are believed to have been in the river between 24 and 72 hours before they were found, with both having been reported missing.
Ramsey had recently graduated with a Master's from the University of St. Thomas, and had earlier achieved an undergraduate degree at the University of St. John's.
The University of St. Thomas' Office of International Students confirmed John's death in a post on its Facebook page.
"We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Blair John, an alum of St. Thomas and a former student worker in OISS," it said.
"He was an amazing person, always kind and caring, continued to keep in touch with each of us since he moved to Canada to pursue his PhD program. He was an extremely smart person with such a big heart. We will miss him dearly."
The Italian Insider notes that there is little indication as to what caused the men's deaths. Other than a cut to Ramsey's face, neither body showed signs of violence.
Authorities are currently awaiting autopsy results before determining how they died, and continue to investigate.
But John's mother Cathleen Rahming, speaking to Tribune 242 in the Bahamas, said she finds it "difficult to believe it was an accident," claiming authorities in Italy have been "very guarded ... about what they told me because they wanted to protect me."
"But my son is very, very fit. He’s a strong swimmer and I know him well enough to know that no, he had no reason to go out this way," she added.