Man dies at Ohio State after taking annual lake plunge

Reuters News
Posted: Nov 25, 2015 1:22 PM

(Reuters) - A young man died after joining in an Ohio State University annual ritual in which students jump into a frigid campus lake to celebrate an upcoming football match, school officials said on Wednesday.

The man, who has not been publicly identified, went into cardiac arrest after plunging into Mirror Lake on the Columbus campus just after midnight on Tuesday, the Ohio State University Emergency Management department said in a statement.

"Unfortunately, after several hours of medical care, the young man ... passed away from his injuries," the department said.

The university said it was working to identify the man, who it described as African-American with medium build and tattoos on his chest and arm.

Ohio State students traditionally jump into Mirror Lake, a small reservoir supplied by the city, the Tuesday night before the school's annual football game between the Ohio State Buckeyes and the University of Michigan Wolverines.

The tradition, which the school does not sponsor, dates back to 1969.

The school issued a safety warning on Wednesday, advising students against entering the lake. It also announced new restrictions, including plans to build a fence around the lake and limit access to enrolled students.

(Reporting by Laila Kearney, editing by G Crosse)