LA PAZ – Police and residents have completed the recovery of the bodies of eight teenagers who drowned in a river in the Chapare, a region in central Bolivia, officials said Wednesday.
The eight teenagers drowned while swimming in the Ichoa River on Tuesday.
Three bodies were found on Tuesday night and the other five were recovered in the past few hours.
The young people stopped to take a swim while traveling from their hometown of Potosi, a city in Bolivia’s Andean region, to the eastern region of Santa Cruz.
Search teams recovered the bodies of seven males and a female, all of whom were 17 and 18, police chief Col. Walter Valda said.
The air force plans to fly the bodies home to Potosi aboard a Hercules transport plane, officials said.
President Evo Morales, who is visiting the Vatican, monitored the recovery operation and ordered that a plane be sent to take the bodies from the Chapare to Potosi, state media reported.
Officials in Potosi are organizing a funeral for the young people and declared an official mourning period.