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Counselor drowns in Seneca Lake

    DRESDEN—Graham Andrus, 24, a Bath resident and counselor at Camp Whitman on Seneca Lake, died after a snorkeling accident at the camp, Friday, Aug. 12.
    According to the New York State Police, Andrus, who lived at 8873 County Route 13, Bath, was snorkeling around 6 p.m. in about 12 feet of water with other counselors when he suffered cramping and was unable to keep himself afloat. Authorities explained Andrus was finally pulled from the water after several attempts by camp staff and was resuscitated at the scene.
    The police report said he was transported to Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hospital in Penn Yan for treatment and subsequently airlifted to Robert Packer Hospital in Sayre, Pa., where he later succumbed to his injuries. State police were assisted at the scene by the Yates County Sheriff’s Office, the Dresden Fire Department and Penn Yan Ambulance crews.
    Camp Whitman is operated by the Presbytery of Geneva. In a news release from the presbytery, Communications Director Rhonda Everdyke said Andrus was a certified scuba diver and avid water sport participant. She explained that the accident happened after the camp closed for the weekend on Friday. The report added, “Appropriate response was given by staff and medical professionals during the accident.”
    Everdyke added that grief experts were provided on Sunday for current staff members for the start of the last week of camp. She said, “his fellow counselors felt that he would have wanted them to finish out the camp season.” A memorial at Camp Whitman will be placed by the end of the summer and the camp is working on a camp scholarship program offered in the upcoming years in his memory.



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