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'Standout' Lewiston graduate dies from severe allergic reaction

Vanessa Paolella, Sun Journal, Lewiston, Maine
Wednesday December 7, 2022

Dec. 6—LEWISTON — Omar Osman, a graduate of Lewiston High School and a first-year student at Bowdoin College, died Saturday night from an allergic reaction.

Osman had a severe nut allergy and died in transport to the hospital after an unexpected exposure, according to a letter from Superintendent Jake Langlais. A message from Bowdoin College noted that paramedics and others attempted to assist Osman, who was on campus at the time of the exposure.

Osman was "a standout academically, a tireless giver to others, and simply a great young man," wrote Langlais. "He was so much more than we can articulate. We will miss him."

A member of the Lewiston High School Class of 2022, Osman was vice president of his class and a student representative to the School Committee during the pandemic. He was a graduate of Lewiston Regional Technical Center's information technology program and captain of the high school robotics team, which won first place at the Pine Tree District FIRST Robotics Competition in Waterville this spring.

"I was so incredibly proud to have him as a student," said Jon Dresser, Osman's information technology teacher. "His character was truly wonderful, and he was a gifted student with a drive to learn and succeed. I was sure he was going to change the world for the better, but he left it too soon."

Osman was also an artist who helped paint murals in Lewiston High School and participated in art club, according to Bowdoin College.

Before his death, Osman, a first-generation college student of Somali descent, was considering majoring in computer science at Bowdoin, the college said. He was attending the school on a full scholarship.

Of his bigger dreams, the college quoted Osman as writing: "I want to be someone anyone and everyone can rely on and can know that I will always be there to help."

Lewiston High School will dismiss at noon on Tuesday to allow students and staff to attend Osman's services if they wish. Services will be held at Gracelawn Memorial Park at 1:30 p.m.

The high school will hold a supervised study hall for students who need to take the bus at 2 p.m. and for students who have an after-school activity to attend.


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