Kresge third-year Cameron Poole was found dead on the morning of Jan. 8. His remains were retrieved below the cliffs at Davenport Beach. The cause of death is still under investigation, but no foul play or crimes are suspected. Sgt. Dee Baldwin of the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s office confirmed his body had not been on the beach for long.
A passerby noticed a body at the base of the cliffs at Davenport Beach at approximately 10:45 a.m. and dialed 911. First responders included Cal Fire, Santa Cruz Fire Department, California State Parks and the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office.
Poole is remembered by his brother, Brian, in a Facebook post as a profound and dedicated young man. Cameron read thoroughly about mental illness and hoped to enter drug design to manufacture a better medication for bipolar disorder.
“I’d once raced him up at the cottage […] He wore an ‘I’m a 50-Miler’ T-shirt. He’d hoped one day to run a marathon,” Brian Poole wrote in his post. “But he was equally forthright about the distance he had to travel just to be stable. He didn’t need to win. Fair odds would have been good enough.”
While it is unclear whether Poole fell or was trapped on the beach, the hazard of frequent erosion along the Northern California coast is very prevalent. Land Trust of Santa Cruz County works to provide cautionary signage along the bluffs, warning visitors to stay back from unsafe cliff edges, but there are still casualties — six deaths occurred between Mendocino and Monterey counties since 2016, according to California State Parks.