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Missing U.S. student found dead in Italy railroad tunnel

(Reuters) - A U.S. college student who went missing two days ago while traveling in Italy has been found dead, authorities said Saturday.

The body of 21-year-old John Durkin, of Rye Beach, New Hampshire, was discovered in a railroad tunnel in Rome, authorities said. CNN reported that Rome railroad police said he had been hit by a train.

The State Department confirmed the find but did not release details about the circumstances of the death, citing "respect for the family at this difficult time."

Durkin was an economics major with a minor in Asian studies, and played football at Bates College, a private liberal arts college in Lewiston, Maine. He was studying abroad with five other Bates College students through a program sponsored by Trinity College of Hartford, Connecticut.

He was last seen by friends early February 20 in the Campo de Fiori section of Rome, according to a statement by Bates College.

"This is a time of deep sadness for our community and for so many people who knew and loved John," said Bates College President Clayton Spencer in a statement. "We are profoundly sad and share the tremendous grief of his family."

(Reporting By Carey Gillam; Editing by David Gregorio)

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