US midshipman accidentally falls to death at Chilean waterfall

Midshipman 2nd Class Luke Gabriel Bird
Military Academies Sexual Assault
Posted at 4:20 PM, Jul 18, 2022

The U.S. Naval Academy says a midshipman from Texas has died after falling over a waterfall in Chile.

The academy says Midshipman 2nd Class Luke Gabriel Bird of New Braunfels, Texas, was participating in a semester abroad program at Chile's Arturo Prat Naval Academy. The 21-year-old junior was hiking with a student from the school on Saturday near the Salto El Agua waterfall in Placilla, in the Valparaíso region, when the academy says he reportedly lost his footing and fell over the waterfall.

Chilean authorities found Bird's body in the waterfall's lagoon on Sunday. Bird was a member of the 20th and 2nd Companies and an ocean engineering major.

“We are incredibly saddened by the tragic loss of Midshipman Luke Bird this weekend,” Vice Adm. Sean Buck, the U.S. Naval Academy’s superintendent, said in a statement. “I encourage all of our Naval Academy family to offer support to one another as we navigate the grieving process.”