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Bates College Student Found Dead in Rome

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Missing Bates College student John Durkin was hit and killed by a train while studying abroad in Rome. He was 21 years old.

Durkin was last seen around 2:30 a.m. Thursday at a bar in the historic Campo de' Fiori area, according to Fox News. Police say that a train passenger saw his body in a rail tunnel a few hours later and alerted authorities.

In a statement on Facebook, the Durkin family says, "It is with much sadness that the Durkin family informs you of the loss of John Nolen Durkin and thanks everyone for their support during the past few days."

The Bates College junior was an economics major and football player who was studying abroad at Trinity College's Rome campus. Bates students gathered Monday to remember their classmate, according to The Boston Globe.

"He was just an all-around happy kid, his smile was contagious," says fellow study abroad student Victoria Chippari. "Although I only knew him for a short time, he went out of his way to make me feel comfortable in a new group of friends by trying to spark conversation and crack jokes to ease the mood that night."

Jay Burns, a spokesperson for the college, says, "This is obviously a heartbreaking moment for John's family, and I want to extend our own sense of deep loss and sorrow to his family and many friends."

Adds Mark Harriman, Bates' head football coach, "John's commitment to excellence in all phases of his life was inspiration to the other members of the squad and a major factor in the team's success over the past three years." 


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