Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hillsborough High teacher dies in Indiana kayaking accident

TAMPA — A history teacher in Hills­borough High's International Baccalaureate program who enjoyed the outdoors has died while kayaking on an Indiana river.

Robert "Fred" DiGenova of Lutz, drowned when he tried to maneuver his kayak over a dam Saturday on the Eel River in Wabash County, near Fort Wayne. Searchers found his body Sunday in a logjam on the river.

"It was really bad to find out on Father's Day," said April DiGenova, his stepmother.

DiGenova, 42, had been at Hillsborough High since 1994. He grew up in Indiana and graduated from Ball State University in 1992.

His father, Null DiGenova, said his son had taken the kayak trip with friends for several years.

He was kayaking with four others last weekend. The others decided to carry their kayaks around the dam. DiGenova, who wasn't wearing a life jacket, did not. When the others reached the other side, he was nowhere to be found.

The water near the dam appears to be calm, but there is a strong current downstream, according to Indiana officials.

Back home, DiGenova's students filled his Facebook page with recollections.

"I didn't realize how many lives he'd touched," Null DiGenova said.

On Friday, there will be a memorial service in Indiana. Then DiGenova's wife, Beatriz, will take his ashes back to Florida.

Times staff writer Luis Perez and the Associated Press contributed to this report. Jared Leone can be reached at (813) 226-3435 or jleone@sptimes.com.

Hillsborough High teacher dies in Indiana kayaking accident 06/21/10 [Last modified: Monday, June 21, 2010 11:48pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Across Tampa Bay, local commercial banks and credit unions appear healthy

    Banking

    In another sign of economic vitality, Florida's home-grown banking industry demonstrated strong bench strength in the latest quarterly analysis by Bauer Financial. The vast majority of commercial banks with headquarters in Florida received five "stars" from Bauer, which is the highest ranking of health on its 0-to-5 …

    Several years ago, First Home Bank in Seminole faced regulators breathing down its neck for inaedquate controls and financial weakness. Under CEO 
Anthony N. Leo, the bank has rebounded. It received a top-rated "5" star rating from Bauer Financial in the latest quarter. Most area banks are doing better these days. [SCOTT KEELER      |     TIMES]
  2. Two linemen lose their wedding rings in Tampa Bay. So far one has been found and returned.

    Human Interest

    Two linemen who spent days restoring power in the Tampa Bay area had the same unfortunate mishap: They lost their wedding rings.

    Facebook helped Michael White find the wedding ring he lost while helping restore power in Tampa Bay.
  3. Need is now for new mental health center at Bay Pines, veterans say

    Veterans

    ST. PETERSBURG — Veteran Ellsworth "Tony" Williams says the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System's new mental health center will help fill an immediate need.

    The new mental health center at the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System stands four stories tall and was built at a cost of $92 million. It will centralize services that before were scattered. [HOWARD ALTMAN   |   Staff]
  4. GOP health bill all but dead; McCain again deals the blow

    National

    WASHINGTON — Sen. John McCain declared his opposition Friday to the GOP's last-ditch effort to repeal and replace "Obamacare," dealing a likely death blow to the legislation and, perhaps, to the Republican Party's years of vows to kill the program.

    Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington in July.  McCain says he won't vote for the Republican bill repealing the Obama health care law. His statement likely deals a fatal blow to the last-gasp GOP measure in a Senate showdown expected next week. [Associated Press]
  5. Yankees executive Jessica Steinbrenner seeks restraining order against ex-husband

    Civil

    TAMPA — Jessica Steinbrenner, a top executive with the New York Yankees and a daughter of the team's late owner George Steinbrenner, is seeking a restraining order against her ex-husband.

    New York Yankees excutive Jessica Steinbrenner, with her then-husband Felix Lopez Jr. in this 2008 photo, filed for a restraining order against Lopez in Hillsborough County last week. 
[Times files]