Search called off for Virginia Tech student who fell overboard on Carnival cruise

Authorities called off the multi-agency search for a Virginia Tech student who fell overboard while on a Carnival cruise early Sunday morning near the Bahamas at the beginning of what was supposed to be a seven-day journey in the Caribbean, The Roanoke Times reported.

Cameron Smook, 21, of  Glen Allen, Va., was aboard the Carnival Glory that departed a day earlier from Miami. The circumstances leading up to the fall are unclear, but no foul play is expected.

Ship officials were notified about a missing passenger several hours later and turned the ship around to assist in a search. There was another Carnival ship in the vicinity that also took part in the search.

The frantic search spanned from Sunday to Tuesday and included the Royal Bahamas Defense Force and the Coast Guard. In all, about 6,330 miles were covered.

Smook was reportedly set to graduate this year with a degree in mining engineering. His family said that he enjoyed his time at Virginia Tech and had just accepted a job offer and "was looking forward to a very bright future."

"Our family sincerely appreciates your continued prayers and support at this most difficult time," a family statement read.

Virginia Tech President Timothy Sands released a statement saying, "The entire Virginia Tech community extends our deepest condolences and sympathies to Cameron's family and friends at this moment of tragedy and grief."

A Carnival spokesman told the paper that these falls are exceedingly rare considering Carnival has 24 ships operating 1,500 voyages a year.

Click for more from The Roanoke Times