A police cruiser hit and killed a college senior who was lying in the road early in the morning on New Year's Day in Chatham, Massachusetts, police say.
Garrett Gagne, 22, of Longmeadow, a senior at St. Lawrence College and a four-year lacrosse team member there, is believed to have been celebrating New Year's Eve with friends in Chatham.
It was unclear why he was lying in the road or what his condition was before the cruiser hit him, police said. They could not immediately reach the friends with whom he had been celebrating.
Gagne was hit on Crowell Road near Tipcart Drive just after 4 a.m. by a marked Chatham police cruiser responding to an emergency call, police said.
The officer who hit him stopped, called for assistance and gave him medical aid, but he was pronounced dead soon after at Cape Cod Hospital.
The crash is under investigation, and police say they will release the name of the officer involved in the next 24 hours.
St. Lawrence College's president William Fox expressed "heart-breaking sadness" in a statement the school put out notifying the school community of his death.
"Wisdom and meaning seem impossible right now in the midst of our immediate, heart-breaking sadness," Fox said. "We must, of course, give our best and most loving thoughts to Garrett's family and friends in a day of such sudden deep grief. When our campus community returns from break, we will plan a gathering to honor Garrett's memory."
Gagne's lacrose coach Mike Mahoney mourned his long-time player as well.
"His smile and enthusiasm were contagious. He could light up the field and sidelines with his personality," Mahoney said in the statement. "This sudden and shocking loss touches every one of us who knew him as one of our best."