Vatican City – Pope Francis met the parents of Beau Solomon, an exchange student who was found dead at the Tiber, to console them and give them his condolences. The Holy Man managed to make some time and gather with Jodi and Nick Solomon moments before addressing a group of French pilgrims at the Vatican Auditorium on Wednesday afternoon.

The Solomons were there to make needed preparations, and they are expected to be at the prayer service that it’s going to be held at Santa Maria in Trastevere. Students from the John Cabot Institute are going to assist the event in remembering their classmate.

Pope Francis meets Nick, left, and Jodi Solomon, the parents of Beau Solomon, a U.S. college student whose body was found in Rome’s Tiber river this week, during private encounter shortly before holding an audience with French pilgrims in a Vatican auditorium, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. Credit: The News Tribune

Beau Solomon, 19, traveled from his hometown, Spring Green Wisconsin, to Trastevere to attend the John Cabot Institute as part of the student exchange program. On Tuesday, one day before the school registration, Beau and his friends went to the Trastevere District for drinks. The stayed in a nearby bar, a 10-minute walk away from the university’s residence, but during the night, his friends noticed he was not there anymore and assumed he had left. Which only increased the surprise they got when they arrived the dorms, and the young man wasn’t there either.

They alerted the authorities about the irregularities which informed his parents, Jodi and Nick Solomon. They took the first plane they could and arrived the country in the morning to collaborate with the authorities and join the search groups. The search ended when investigators found the dead body of the young student in the Tiber River on Wednesday morning about three miles from which he was last seen.

Beau Solomon drowned to death

The autopsy’s report was released in the afternoon, and it says the man died drowned. With this information, the police discarded the theory that he had been killed and then dumped in the river. However, amidst the investigation, the police department issued an arrest order on Massimo Galioto, a homeless 40-year-old man who lived on the river banks. The investigation is still ongoing, but the police said some reports indicate Galioto and Beau could have had an argument which ended in the homeless man pushing Solomon into the Tiber River where he drowned.

Still, there are still a couple of loose knots, and the detectives don’t want to leave anything unchecked. For example, the investigation indicates strange movements in Solomon’s credit card records before he disappeared which had led the authorities to think he was robbed hours before he died.

Beau’s dead should be a warning for all the American exchange people studying abroad. According to the organizations that organize student exchange programs, there are no national rules or parameters that students have to follow. Instead, the department of education in the United States released guidelines that establish the best practices for this kind of initiatives, but they are not mandatory.

According to the National Association of Foreign Student Affairs, there are more than 300,000 American students currently attending classes abroad.

Source: Fox 9