Dartmouth College graduate student found dead in Connecticut River

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Late on Monday, Lebanon police announced that she was found dead in the Connecticut River. There had been an active search for her since she disappeared last Wednesday.

During the investigation, video footage from two different businesses showed Cai riding her e-bike towards West Lebanon on NH Route 10 at around 6 p.m. on the day she went missing. A driver later spotted what they believed to be her bike in the Boston Lot Conservation Area, narrowing down the search area.

Then, on Monday around 4 p.m., a fisherman reported seeing something along the Connecticut River in Windsor, Vermont. First responders were able to locate and bring the body to shore at around 5:36 p.m., later identifying it as Cai.

Before her body was found, her partner, Kristian Droste, spoke to WMUR-TV and described Cai as a loving and kind person. He shared beautiful qualities about her, such as her infectious laughter, the way she sings to him in a language he doesn’t speak but is learning, her loyalty to her family and loved ones, and her appreciation for the interplay of light and shadow passing through trees.

It’s truly heartbreaking to hear such news, and our thoughts go out to Cai’s loved ones during this difficult time.

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