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Surfer Drowns

May 27, 2016

Classmates of the Queens high school student who drowned at Rockaway Beach while horsing around with friends mourned his death Thursday.

Rudra Gurung, a senior at Newtown High School, was overpowered by the dangerous Atlantic Ocean riptides Wednesday afternoon.

“I was going to go, too,” said Klever Wepez, a 19-year-old senior, shaking his head, outside school in Elmhurst early Thursday. “I guess God didn’t want me to go.

“He was a real cool guy,” Wepez added. “We use to chill and he would give me money when I didn’t have any.”

Herin Patel, 18, a junior, said he saw Gurung, 19, at a deli Wednesday morning. They had algebra class together.


Gurang’s friends speak to rescue personnel.

“I was playing cricket later and my coach told me about it,” he said of Gurung’s death. “I didn’t believe it at first. Damn, man. He was a good kid.”

Patel said Gurung was a good student who always did his homework.

“He was on point,” Patel said.

The tragedy would be addressed during the school day Thursday, a school employee said.

“It’s a shame, really. He wasn’t a bad kid,” the employee said. “They have a psychologist coming to talk to the kids.”

Meanwhile, the NYPD was continuing Thursday to stop truants from skipping school and heading to the beach, which has no lifeguards until beaches open for the season Saturday. Cops were checking city buses for truants at the Joseph P. Addabbo Memorial Bridge in Howard Beach.



Emergency responders worked frantically to rescue Rudra Gurang, 19, but it was too late.


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