Cal Poly student dies after diving into river in Spain

Matthew Yount
Matthew Yount Courtesy photo

A member of the Cal Poly golf team died Thursday during a swimming accident in Spain, university officials said Friday.

Matthew Yount, 20, was a business student who was studying in Seville, Spain, as part of the CEA Global Education program to study abroad.

According to Diario de Sevilla, a newspaper in Spain, Yount and two friends were returning after a night of drinking when they approached a bridge over the river Guadalquivir. Two of the friends, including Yount, took off their shirts and jumped into the river for fun. When the third rode a bike to the bottom of the bridge, he only found one friend. Both friends said Yount never surfaced after diving into the 45-degree water. While the other swimmer was taken to the hospital for symptoms of hypothermia, divers searched for hours before finally discovering Yount’s body.

According to the Cal Poly Athletics website, Yount was a 2011 graduate of Foothill High School in Pleasanton, where he lettered four times in golf and once in wrestling. In high school, he led his team to a third-place statewide finish at Poppy Hills in Pebble Beach.

Calls to members of the men's golf team and its coach were not returned Friday afternoon.

But the Cal Poly SLO Mens and Womens Golf Team posted a note on its Facebook page, saying, “Our Cal Poly Golf Family is truly saddened because yesterday we lost one of our own, Matt Yount. Matt has definitely made a positive impact on all of his teammates and friends. That impact will last forever.”

Meanwhile, Cal Poly President Jeffrey D. Armstrong issued a statement expressing sympathies to the family. A memorial service will be held after the Thanksgiving break, according to the statement, and counseling services were offered to students by calling 805-756-2511.

Yount is survived by his parents, Greg and Sandy Yount, and a brother, Adam.