TORONTO: An Indian-origin student of the University of Waterloo near here drowned in the chilly waters of Pickerel Lake while trying to save a friend.
Ishan Srinivasan, 21, who lived in the Toronto suburb of Mississauga, drowned when their boat capsized in frigid waters, plunging him and his two friends into the lake.
Srinivasan’s body was cremated here Thursday. His two friends who survived and were admitted to hospital with hypothermia, have recovered, according to the Toronto Star newspaper.
Recalling their ordeal after their boat capsized, one of the survivors told the paper, “We were all struggling. The water was freezing. The canoe tipped over and I knew if we didn’t call someone it would have been over for all of us.”
The survivor said he and Srinivasan tried to save their third friend who was struggling to stay afloat despite being the only one wearing a life jacket. He said that between shouts for help, he and Srinivasan took turns to prop up their sinking friend. But by the time neighbours in nearby cottages arrived in motorboats to save them, Srinivasan drowned.
Ms Gunjan Gite, Srinivasan’s girlfriend of four years, told the newspaper that he was “completely selfless. His personality just shines out. You meet him once and you feel like you can open up to him… He cares so much for everyone around him.” The University of Waterloo is a favourite institution with Indian students. Hyderabad-born Prem Watsa, who is known as the ‘Canadian Warren Buffet,’ is the chancellor of the university.