Western Kentucky University Baseball Player Drowns

The Western Kentucky University family is mourning the death of one of their own.

20-year-old Michael Wilhite drowned in the Deschutes river, just one day before his 21st birthday.

Wilhite was an in-fielder for the Hilltoppers and was in Oregon for the summer to play second base for the Bend, Oregon Elks team.

Authorities say Wilhite was floating on the river with two friends on an air mattress when witnesses say he fell in while trying to get off the mattress.

A dive team found Wilhite's body after searching for two hours.

About ten members of the Elks team were in the river with Wilhite when the accident happened.

Wilhite is a Franklin native and had just completed his Sophomore baseball season at Western.

Recently-retired Hilltopper Baseball coach, Joel Murrie released this statement : "My thoughts and prayers are with the Wilhite family, who I have known for many, many years ... Michael was more than a ballplayer ...he was family.
I can't think of a more devastating loss in my life as a coach ... than losing a person like Michael."