Student's body found near Penn's Landing

January 2, 2009 9:07:10 PM PST
The body of a University of Pennsylvania student has been found near Penn's Landing in Philadelphia.Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter's office identifies the man as 22-year-old Kambili Moukwa, who was a communications intern.

Moukwa was from Shaker Heights, Ohio.

Mayor Michael Nutter comforted Moukwa's father, Mosongo, Friday night where his body was found, at the far end of a vacant parking lot at Spring Garden and Delaware Avenue.

"It's unfortunate that he died and he's going to be greatly missed in the Press office," said Doug Oliver, the mayor's press secretary.

Police say Moukwa was out clubbing with friends on New Year's Eve. They were taking cabs from club to club, the last bing the Zee Bar on Spring Garden.

When he did not return home the next day, his friends reported him missing.

On Friday, they went back to the area and found his body in a vacant lot.

Police believe his death was accidental, possibly the result of hypothermia and alcohol.

The mayor's office staff saw Moukwa as a gifted young man with a bright future.

"His background was in political science, he knew almost every U.S. congressman and senator, state representative," Oliver said. "He was just well versed in that, so we counted on him just for his gut instincts and insights."

Moukwa's father, who had been working in Mumbai, India, was home for the holidays in North Carolina when he got the call about his son's death. He took the first flight he could get to Philadelphia.

It's clear Moukwa will be greatly missed in the mayor's press office.

"He was a friend, he had a warm smile, he was somebody who was willing to do whatever he needed to do, there's no question he was going to be successful," Oliver said.

Moukwa was looking forward to graduating this year and then working on getting a Ph.D. in government and politics.

In a written statement, Mayor Nutter said "I was saddened to learn of Kam's death. He was a regular face around the Mayor's Office and in a very short time, he became a part of our team. I recognized from the contacts that I had with him that he was making real contributions to our government. He will be remembered fondly."

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