MISSOULA — A missing University of Montana student died on impact when his Subaru went off a 60-foot embankment on Highway 21 near the turnoff for Stanley Lake, the Custer County, Idaho, Sheriff’s Office reported Friday morning.
Lucius Robbi died on Aug. 19, the day he was last seen while traveling to Missoula to begin fall semester classes at UM. He was 21 and a resident of Orleans, California.
In a news release, Custer County Coroner Vicki Armbruster said Robbi died of blunt force trauma to the head in the crash. His body was recovered late Thursday night after searchers in a private helicopter spotted the tip of a kayak in the trees.
Searchers from both Idaho and Montana had scoured a widespread area along several highways following Robbi’s disappearance. He had worked as a river guide in Horseshoe Bend, Idaho, over the summer and left from there for Missoula.
Just before midnight Thursday, Robbi’s mother, Tina Glaessner, posted a note to the Facebook page “Finding Lucius,” thanking "all of the many friends who came together to search for him. ... We are touched as well by the support of so many who did not even know our family, but showed their humanity and tremendous generosity at such a difficult time through countless acts of kindness."
His death had been reported earlier in the evening on the same page by searcher Holly Hayes.
"Thank you all for everything you've done Finding Lucius Robbi," Hayes wrote. "This evening he was found. He passed in a fatal car accident and my heart goes out to all who had the pleasure of knowing him and to all those who have been touched by him."
The Idaho State Police is investigating the cause of the accident. In Friday morning’s statement, the Custer County Sheriff’s Office said Robbi’s Subaru traveled across the northbound lane of traffic and down the embankment, hitting several large pine trees.
Officials said the area near Stanley Lake had been searched earlier, both by road and fixed-wing airplane, but there was no way to see the Subaru from the road. Brush had to be cleared from the scene before the car was visible, the sheriff said.
In addition, recent rain showers and thunderstorms had washed away any vehicle tracks or debris that might have been left on the shoulder of the road, the release said.