November 17, 2011

Colby student dies in Chile

Junior Derrik Flahive, a global studies major from Colorado, was on lacrosse team

WATERVILLE -- Colby College is mourning the death of a junior from Colorado who drowned Tuesday in Chile, where he was spending a semester abroad.

Derrik Flahive, 20, of Littleton, Colo., jumped about 30 feet into the chute-like Petrohué waterfalls in the Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park with fellow exchange student Samuel Edward, according to La Tercera news in Chile.

The Denver Post reported that a tourist boat on the Petrohue River was able to rescue Edward, 20, of Ohio. Flahive apparently hit his head on rocks and went under water, according to the Post.

Colby College President William Adams said Flahive was enrolled in the School for International Training program based in Santiago.

"There are few details available now, but we will share information about memorial services and other opportunities to remember and honor Derrik as those plans develop," Adams said.

"I know that all of us send our profound sympathies to Derrik's family and to his friends -- here at Colby and beyond -- in their time of unimaginable grief," Adams said.

Flahive was a global studies major with a minor in philosophy, according to a statement from Colby. He played varsity lacrosse.

"While the team is overcome with grief, we look now to remember the good times we shared with Derrik and try to provide some comfort to his parents and sisters," men's lacrosse head coach Justin Domingos said in the release.

Flahive traveled to Tanzania and Zimbabwe to help build schools, wells and stoves. He was a mentor in the Colby Cares About Kids program and participated in lacrosse team fundraisers and volunteer activities, the release states.

He was described as having a blazing shot on the lacrosse field, finishing fifth on the team in scoring last year. He had 10 goals and six assists for 16 points, plus 14 groundballs.

"He was part of a strong recruiting class that helped the Mules to three straight NESCAC playoff appearances," according to the statement.

He participated in the Colby Student Investment Association, which tries to earn positive returns for the Colby Endowment, while teaching its members the fundamentals of economics and finance.

Flahive graduated from Kent Denver School, a private school in Englewood, Colo., in 2009.

His parents, Roger and Katherine Flahive, run the Flahive Family Foundation, which has a mission "to enhance the quality of life of people all over the world through activities that promote education, self-sufficiency, health and wellness. The emphasis is on international projects and third world countries, especially Africa," according to its website.

Erin Rhoda -- 612-2368

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