Yesterday the residents of the Lester Hughes male dormitory grieved the tragic death of one of their own. Pablo Escobedo, a sophomore, died in the early morning hours yesterday, apparently the victim of killer bees. His body was discovered just outside the main entrance by junior Johnny Koepp, who had gotten up early to exercise.
“It was unreal. At first I didn’t recognize him ‘cause his whole body was puffed up and swollen, even his face. He didn’t look like Pablo at all,” Koepp later said.
According to Koepp and other witnesses, Escobedo’s exposed skin was covered with more than 100 stings.
University officials are searching the nearby campus area in search of the bee hive so it can be removed or destroyed. Dr. Lyle Canton, an entomology professor, is assisting in the search along with some of his more advanced students.
“Usually bees only attack when they are threatened. Poor Mr. Escobedo must have accidentally irritated them and been overwhelmed before he could reach help,” Dr. Canton said. “While we are doing everything we can to remove the threat from campus, if you have an insect sting allergy you should always carry an [epinephrine] pen to treat yourself until you can get to the hospital.”
Yesterday’s death marked the second insect attack this week. Friends claim Escobedo was also swarmed by hundreds of cockroaches. Although very disturbing, his friends say the inexplicable swarm was short-lived and left their friend no worse for wear.