Northwestern rowing team member

by Sean Keenehan

The body of 19-year-old Northwestern University student Mohammed Ramzan was recovered from the North Shore Channel at about 7:30 p.m. Monday, April 10, about 12 hours after he fell out of a boat during a morning practice with the Northwestern Crew club rowing team, according to Lincolnwood police.

Officers responded to a call at about 7:30 a.m. Monday of a missing team member who had fallen overboard into the channel from a boat that had launched at the Skokie Park District’s Dammrich Rowing Center, 3220 Oakton St., according to police.

According to statements released by Northwestern University, Ramzan fell overboard from a boat that contained nine students in an 8-man shell with a coxswain who is in charge of steering the boat. After Ramzan fell into the water, a coach in a separate boat who was accompanying the team entered the water along with another crew member in an attempt to rescue the student, the statement said.

Ramzan’s body was recovered in the channel at about 7:30 p.m. and he died as a result of the incident, police said. Ramzan was a first year student on a full scholarship at Northwestern from Auburn, Washington, according to the university. According to a report from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office, Ramzan’s death was ruled an accidental drowning.

"The crew athletes are members of a club sport at Northwestern. Crew is not a varsity sport at the university. Northwestern has had a club crew since the 1980s, and no serious incidents have occurred during that time," vice president for university relations Alan Cubbage said.

The university crew team posted a message on its Facebook page that said, "It is with great sadness that we report the loss of one of our teammates, Mohammed Ramzan. Mohammed will be remembered as one of Northwestern Crew’s most perserverant athletes and friendliest faces. We will miss him dearly."