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A terrible story as a San Francisco State University student went missing on Thursday after participating in a ‘polar plunge’ off of Esplanade Beach in Pacifica, California.
22-year-old Hamzah Alsaudi, who is also part of the school’s wrestling program, was hit by a large wave while participating in the plunge with friends.
The wave crashed on Alsaudi before pulling him underneath the water. Immediately his friends tried to locate him to no avail before onlookers called 911. Police, lifeguards and the Coast Guard launched a search and rescue mission attempting to locate him, using drones, various aircraft as well as boats to try and locate him.
Unfortunately, they never did. According to the University, rescue efforts will not resume.
San Francisco State’s Vice President Jamillah Moore released a statement announcing the sad news about Alsaudi.
POLAR PLUNGES ARE A POPULAR TREND DURING WINTER MONTHS
“I write to you with a heavy heart,” the statement read as Moore informed the student body about the current situation regarding Hamzah. The school announced that there would be counseling services available for any who may need it.
Polar plunges have become popular in recent years. It involves people swimming in the ocean during the colder months of the year. The Pacific Ocean temperature at the time was reported to be in the mid-50s. However the particular area that Alsaudi was swimming in at the time was experiencing dangerous rip tides.
Hamzah was pursuing a political science degrees with a minor in Arab and Muslim Ethnicities and Diasporas Studies.