An unbelievably tragic ending to a promising life occurred on December 26 in a Sarasota, Florida, YMCA swimming pool. Tate Ramsden, 21, of Nashville, Tennessee, died at the Selby Aquatic Center while visiting his family. His sister noticed that he didn’t surface in a reasonable amount of time and alerted a lifeguard, who performed CPR and called 911. However, paramedics were unable to revive him, and he was pronounced dead at the local hospital.
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A graduate of Montgomery Bell Academy in Green Hills, Tennessee, Ramsden was a junior swimmer on scholarship at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, a college notable for its prestige in academics and athletics. The incident happened around 2 p.m. on Saturday. There were lifeguards on duty, and every effort was made to revive him, but he was pronounced dead at 2:13 p.m. by emergency room physicians at the local hospital, according to WishTV. An autopsy will be performed to determine the exact cause of his death.
The Selby Aquatic Center released a statement in regards Ramsdens’ death.
“Every year for the last seventy years, thousands have arrived at our YMCA and our expectations were that they would have a wonderful experience during their stay.
Unfortunately, there was an aquatic emergency Saturday at the Evalyn Sadlier Jones YMCA Branch Pool and a 21-year-old guest passed away after being extracted from the pool by our lifeguards.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to this man’s family at this time. This event is nearly impossible to comprehend, and he and his family are in our hearts.
It is important for all to know that, as is our custom, we are immediately launching an investigation into the incident and are cooperating with all local authorities in their investigations.
Out of respect for the family, we ask that you honor their privacy at this difficult time. Again, I’m sure you join us in offering your prayers to this man and his family.”
According to records from the incident written by the Sarasota Sheriff’s Department, Ramsden was visiting the area with his family that included his mother, sister, uncle, and cousin. Only his sister, uncle, and cousin were at the pool at the time of his drowning.
— WTHR.com (@WTHRcom) December 30, 2015
He had been swimming for quite a while, approximately 4,000 yards, before practicing his “underwater swimming techniques.” The incident report stated it was believed he was trying to complete a “100,” which is four laps without coming up for air. Sometime during that situation, he apparently ran into a serious problem that either caused him to lose consciousness or kept him from reaching the surface, although nothing unusual was reported.
Nashville Aquatic Head Coach John Morse said that Ramsden was an avid swimmer who started at 6-years-old.
“He worked really hard at it and it was in high school years that he really sort of blossomed into a good swimmer. My understanding is what Tate was doing was 100 yards underwater, so holding his breath going four lengths of the pool underwater, and, no, that is absolutely is not something that’s taught and it’s very much discouraged. We’ll never know what he could have accomplished in life so it’s very sad.”
Associate Head Coach Doug Wharam of Dartmouth said that Ramsden was a talented swimmer and kind person.
“He was about as good as they come. Always the first one to lend a helping hand to the new kids in the group. That’s the kind of person he’ll be remembered as.”
Ramsden and his family were also very involved in Habitat for Humanity at home in Nashville and was a valued volunteer there.
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