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Teenager dies after ice bucket challenge
August 26, 2014, 5:51 pm
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A teenager has died after joining in a variation of the latest internet craze, the ice bucket challenge.

Cameron Lancaster is believed to be the first victim of the trend, in which people film themselves having ice water poured over their heads for charity. The 18-year-old was found dead after jumping into a disused quarry.

Lancaster disappeared under the water at Prestonhill Quarry in Inverkeithing, Fife, on Sunday. He is thought to have jumped feet first off a cliff into shallow water, in response to the internet mania that has swept around the world.

His body was recovered after a four-hour search.

The death of Lancaster, from Burntisland, a small coastal village in southern Fife, comes amid mounting criticism of the challenge. Some observers say it has begun to stray from its original aim of raising awareness and money for the neurodegenerative disease ALS, or motor neurone disease.

In recent weeks, participants have filmed themselves performing increasingly risky stunts in new variations of the challenge. The family of Lancaster, who was preparing to go to Edinburgh Napier University, remembered his "friendliness and thoughtful generosity of spirit".

It is understood that he took part in an ice bucket challenge before leaping into the water from 80ft high cliffs.

Wilma Sutherland, 41, said she saw the police, ambulance and fire brigade speeding up the road to the quarry. She said the quarry was a popular site for youngsters in the region to swim. "I've seen lots of teenagers jumping in," she said.

"This is a tragic set of circumstances. I feel so sorry for the family."

Just days before the death a woman was filmed performing the challenge while sitting on a horse. The creature bolted when hit by the water, throwing her to the ground. Iain Yuile, the headmaster of Inverkeithing High School, which Lancaster left earlier this year, described the teenager as a "popular pupil who had a great passion for drama and music".

Lancaster was a singer and bass player for a band named Free Fall at the high school. Yuile said the teenager had performed at the annual school awards ceremony in June.

"Everyone at Inverkeithing High School is shocked and saddened by the news," he added. In a statement released by Police Scotland, his family said: "Cameron died in a tragic accident. His death is such a great loss. During his short life, he touched so many people with his friendliness, kindness and thoughtful generosity of spirit. He will be hugely missed by his family and friends.
"The family are finding it hard to come to terms with this sudden loss and would ask for privacy at this sad time."

Emergency services were called to the disused quarry shortly before 5pm on Sunday. They searched the deep water until his body was recovered about 9pm.

A police spokesman said: "Inquiries are under way to establish the full circumstances of what happened. Police Scotland's thoughts are with the family."

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