A Gator in Dar Es Salaam

"Ex Africa semper aliquid novi - Out of Africa always something new" -Pliny the Elder

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Camille Bouquet

Tuesday afternoon my friend Camille and her mother and father were in a bad car accident outside of Arusha in northern Tanzania. I spent Christmas weekend with them and had Christmas dinner with them. We rode the ferry back to Dar es Salaam together on monday morning. Camille was taken to Arusha hospital and then transferred to the hospital in Nairobi, Kenya. She has been unconscious and is on life support. We have been dealing with no absolutes and cannot really get in touch with who we need to. The US Embassy has failed the students here on a level hard to explain. Im not sure what they do but they are no help and as far as I am concerned can go straight back to the US because they arent helping us and are certainly not helping Tanzanians, so they dont actually do anything. That has been very disconcerting and I have been disapointed in my country and how they help their citizens.

Camille's mother broke her leg and pelvis but came through surgery ok. Her father hurt his back but can make the decisions that need to be made. They have taken her off life support and she will pass away sometime today. Camille is 20 years old and a student at Barnard in NYC. Shes a hilarious person. Mercer was her best friend and she cannot handle any of this. I suppose Im kind of in charge of things for everyone here, which is good because it keeps me occupied. I guess just keep Camille and her family in your thoughts and prayers, thanks.



  • At 12/31/2005 5:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    SOOOO sorry to hear about your friend Camille. Needless to say, our prayers are with you and her family. I can't even imagine going through that here in the USA, but out of the country where it seems everything is out of your hands must be overwhelming!

    Once again please know our thoughts and prayers are with you every day and look forward to your safe returning.


    Tammie & Charlie

  • At 1/01/2006 12:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    Your mom wrote and asked me to look at your blog. I am so sorry about your friend. If there is anything we can do just let us know. It was very upsetting to hear that the embassy did not help in any way. If people call or leave them e-mails from the US, do you think it would help? We were always told to travel overseas with private health insurance, including evacuation. Guess I knnow why now.

    God Bless you and your friends.

    Miss Tippy

  • At 1/03/2006 3:16 AM, Anonymous Yael Silverstein said…


    I stumbled across this page. Camille was one of my best friends at Barnard. Please email me at yael.silverstein@gmail.com

    - Yael

  • At 1/03/2006 4:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi, my name is Robbie and i spent last January with Camille in New York and spoke to her a lot whilst she was in Africa. I was supposed to be flying over from the UK to meet her at the end of this month again in New York as she was due back in 2 weeks. I was distraught when her uncle (who intoduced me to her) called me about her accident, then her death.

    I just came on the internet to see if anything had been put up about her death and i came across this so i had to post something.

    I loved Camille to bits; she was a hillarious person who gave me a lot of love and support when i was going through a few problems last year and i'll never forget it.

    My prayers have been with her parents, Ed and Nancy, at this hard time and my thoughts are with you people out there in Africa.

    I'm thinking of you


  • At 1/03/2006 4:59 PM, Blogger brenda said…

    Matt, nothing is more senseless than the loss of a young life. I am so sorry for you and your friends. We will pray for Camille and her family.

  • At 1/06/2006 7:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    My name is Melissa, I worked with Camille for 2 years in New York while she was at Barnanrd, I heard about the accident yesterday from another friends. My thoughts and prayers are with all of Camille's other friends and family, her parents especially. She was a very special person that we were all privileged to know.

  • At 1/06/2006 8:45 PM, Anonymous Katy Gabel said…

    Hi Matt,

    I don't even know you but I was a student on the Brown program last year. My heart is really breaking for all of you and Camille's family and friends.

    Is anyone staying out the year after this or are most people leaving?

  • At 1/10/2006 2:53 AM, Anonymous Ann Cambronne said…

    My name is Ann and I googled her name to find this blog. Thanks for writing. She is and will always be one of my closest friends here in New York. It was good to know what has happened from someone that is over there. Thank you and we all miss her so much. Please feel free to email me at annabanana242@yahoo.com.

    Also if Robbie reads this, please email me, Camel told me so much about you.

  • At 1/10/2006 11:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    I too was very close with Camille. She was and still is one of my best friends at Barnard. I describe her as one of the most exquisite, caring, unique, and beautiful (on the inside and out) people that I have some across. I am so lucky to have met such a wonderful person and am also so unfortunate to have lost her. I'm sure that you have many wonderful stories fromthe past few months about Camille. She promised me that when she returned we would sit down and talk about everything that happened last semester. Since that can no longer happen, I was wondering if you had any stories you could share with me. Please feel free to contact me pw2110@barnard.edu. I know this is a difficult time for all, but if you think back to all of the memories i'm positive that you will most likely find a smile on your face. She has left me with infinite wisdom, hilarious stories, and many moments that I will always cherish.


  • At 1/11/2006 11:34 AM, Blogger Eddie said…

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  • At 1/11/2006 11:43 AM, Blogger Mortimer G. Thornock, III said…


    Like previous commenters, I was close with indelible Camille. We hung out regularly during last spring and I grew to cherish her frankness of speech and her genuine care for her loved ones. To say that she'll be missed by all of us who knew her is of course a prodigious understatement. Even as I log in to this website for the first time in almost a year to comment, I remember Camille as the last thing I wrote with my account was about a day when she and I went to Central Park. It's still a shock to think that I'll never go there with her again. She was one of a kind and will never be forgotten.

    If you need anything,
    Eddie: epb2102@columbia.edu
    AIM: Jiggz84

  • At 1/12/2006 2:12 AM, Anonymous Tom said…


    I was one of the Americans that first arrived on the accident scene. I provided first aid to Camille until she was driven to the air strip. I also helped her parents Ed and Nancy. If you have contact information for her parents in Africa, please contact me. I would like to talk offline with you, please email me when you get the chance. Thanks. tsingle@adelphia.net

  • At 1/16/2006 11:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    To all of Camille's friends and family in the US,

    I'm another one of Camille's friends in Dar. Please know that y'all have been in our thoughts. We all heard some great stories about her friends at home and I know she was looking forward to seeing everyone again. I'm so so so sorry for your loss. Camille was so warm and bright and hilarious and caring and alive.

    Also, everyone here has compiled their pictures of Camille in Tanzania so if anyone emails me their address at kmullan@ufl.edu, I can burn them onto CDs and send them to you once I get back to the US this weekend.

    Take care,
    Kate Mullan

  • At 5/31/2006 7:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hi Matt,

    I've known Camille all my life. At Eaglebrook when we lived in the dorms, I lived at the other end of the hall from her. I'd run down there every day. After a while, she turned from my friend to babysitter (she's five years older than me), then to my friend again after she handed down clothes and I got into Eaglebrook, then once again when I got into Deerfield Academy. My mother helped Ed & Nancy put together the service, and my dad is Ed's boss. My mother cooks for the Bouquet's twice a week and spends her Saturdays next door at Nancy's. Today is the five month mark of her death, and Eaglebrook's yearbook was dedicated to her. They had a ceremony announcing the dedication and Ed & Nancy spoke beautifully. I suppose, on behalf of everyone, or maybe just myself, I want to say thank you for this post. I googled her name, just to find whatever I could of articles, and I found this. I don't know what this comment is trying to accomplish. Whether it be consolation that there are others who are devastated as yourself, or me simply trying to put my feelings into words, thanks for writing this.


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