Incoming freshman dies in crash

by Ben Nunnery | 8/12/08 2:13am

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Gabriel Pacione, an incoming member of the Class of 2012, was killed in an automobile accident on Sunday night.
by Courtesy of wbztv.com / The Dartmouth

The Wenham Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police are still investigating the accident's cause, Captain Thomas C. Perkins of the Wenham Police Department told The Dartmouth on Monday.

Many of those close to Pacione, a 2006 graduate of Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School, have said he was known for both his athletic talent and his academic achievements. Pacione, who was named Boston Globe All Scholastic Runner of the Year in 2006 and 2007, planned to continue running competitively at Dartmouth as a member of the men's cross-country team.

Barry Harwick, the team's coach, said he was pleased with Pacione's decision to attend the College, adding that he believed Pacione "fit in well" with the team.

"We had a chance to see him run, and we were very impressed with how he raced," Harwick said. "He was very popular with the guys on the team he stayed with. Gabe created a very positive impression."

Dartmouth Dean of Admissions Maria Laskaris '84 said Pacione's application to the College led her to believe that he would have been a great asset to the Dartmouth community, although she never had direct contact with him.

"Reading through his letters of recommendation and essays, I got the sense that he was a very kind and thoughtful person," she said. "He was portrayed as a real leader, not only in tangible ways, but also intangible. His personal qualities were the real highlights of his application in addition to his athletic talents. This is a huge loss for his family."

Robert Krol, principal of Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School, said the school community was saddened by the loss of the recent graduate in a press release from Superintendent of Schools Marinel D. McGrath.

"Gabe was so well-liked by all of the students, not only for his academic and athletic prowess, but also for his ability to reach out and make friends with all students in the school," he said in the press release.

McGrath said Pacione had a wide range of interests, pointing to his work with children as a day camp counselor at the Pingree Summer School, as well as his extracurricular involvement.

"Gabe was a strong academic student and a gifted athlete who also had a strong interest in the arts, participating in our sculpture and theater programs, as well as a range of student activities," she said in the press release.

Harwick said he stayed in contact with Pacione via email over the Summer term.

"He should have been showing up on campus in a few weeks to go on his first-year trip," he said.

Pacione's family declined to comment when reached by The Dartmouth on Monday.

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