What was supposed to be a fun summer afternoon quickly turned tragic after a university student from Nigeria ran into trouble  while  swimming with friends Wednesday in Musquash, N.B.

Witnesses say the 22-year-old man, whose name has not been released, jumped into the popular swimming hole feet-first from a bridge ten metres up.

When he failed to resurface, his friends phoned 911.

“It’s just a tragedy how things turned out, what was supposed to be a good day and a happy day,” says Lisa Duplessis, a friend of the victim.

The man was from Nigeria but was living in Saint John to attend university. Witnesses say he was swimming with friends from his home country.

“They are devastated. They immediately started praying and one of his friends was in the water and his other two friends just started praying and hoping for the best,” says Duplessis.

RCMP and the Musquash Fire Department rushed to the scene around 5:30 p.m.

“We started a shoreline search in hopes that he had surfaced and made his way down shore somewhere,” says public information officer Andrew Sanojca. “We observed from the highway overpass and bridge as well. We sent out resources for about four hours, with no success.”

The man’s body was recovered this morning. Officials say the cause of death has yet to be determined but they suspect he drowned.

Friends of the victim describe him as a happy-go-lucky man who loved spending time with his friends and dreamed of making a better life for his family in Nigeria.

With files from CTV Atlantic's Ashley Dunbar