Cornell-bound teen from the Bronx dies while swimming in Ithaca

Posted: Updated:
ITHACA -

An Ivy League-bound teen from the Bronx drowned Saturday while swimming in Ithaca, according to police.

State police pulled the body of Winston Perez-Ventura from the waters of Ithaca Falls after reports that he entered the gorge waters but did not resurface.

Last December, Perez-Ventura's acceptance to Cornell University went viral after he posted it to their Facebook page.

He had been accepted into the school's bachelor of architecture program.

Perez-Ventura was in Ithaca participating in a pre-freshman summer program.

"He was an exceptional person who would have contributed greatly to our university community. Please join me in keeping Winston and his family and friends in our thoughts as we process the enormity of this loss," said Ryan Lombardi, vice president of Student and Campus Life at Cornell University.

Perez-Ventura was the first student from his high school to be accepted into college. He was part of the first class of a new charter school that was founded four years ago.

His first day of college would have been in two weeks, on Aug. 23.

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