Teenage Scottish Scout dies on adventure holiday

A FOURTEEN-year old Scout has died while on an adventure holiday in the Italian Alps.

The teenager died while on a scout trip. Picture: Creative Commons
The teenager died while on a scout trip. Picture: Creative Commons

Elliot Peacock, from Newton Mearns, East Renfrewshire, died while involved in a gorge scrambling exercise in the Gran Paradiso National Park, near Turin.

The schoolboy was on a trip to the Lillaz waterfalls with 35th Crookfur Scout Group when he died on Sunday.

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A statement from Acorn Adventure, the UK-based company which ran the trip, said Elliot was part of a group jumping into water under instruction. It is understood he lost consciousness as he jumped into the water. He was immediately rescued from the water but could not be resuscitated.

Rescue workers said the youth may have hit his chest on rocks in an ill-judged dive, it was revealed last night.

Last night floral tributes ringed a tree in the front of the teenager’s school,. One parent who laid flowers: “It’s awful. It’s such a tragic accident.”

The teenager, a third year pupil at Eastwood High School, was with a group of around 40 Scouts who were on the second full day of their nine-day trip when the incident happened.

A statement from Acorn Adventure said: “They were jumping into the water, where instructors were waiting. All participants were wearing buoyancy aids, wetsuits and helmets as is standard on this activity.

“As yet it is unclear why this participant lost consciousness as he entered the water. Despite very swiftly being given CPR by trained first aiders and nurses who attended the scene, very sadly paramedics were unable to resuscitate him.”

“The thoughts and condolences of all at Acorn Adventure are with his family and friends.”

Senior company staff, along with a trauma counsellor, have travelled to Italy to provide support to Elliot’s family who have flown out.

Acorn Adventure said it was working with the Italian emergency services and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office to ensure the Elliot’s body is brought home to his family “swiftly and respectfully”.

A spokesman for the Guardia di Finanza police in Courmayeur, who are investigating the cause of the accident, said: “The boy was on holiday with an adventure group of 40 young people. They were playing games in a waterfall.

“When he re-emerged from the water he was unconscious. There were five instructors in the water and they immediately tried to revive him but they were unable to do so.”

A spokeswoman for East Renfrewshire Council said: “We are devastated to learn of the death of one of our young pupils.

“Our priority is to provide whatever support is required to the year group and to the family.

“We are aware that the family are on their way to Italy and our thoughts are with them at this profoundly sad time.”

In a statement the Scout Association said it: “We are devastated that a young person has died and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the young person.”