Family of VCU freshman found dead after fraternity party wants answers | USA TODAY 1

Family of VCU freshman found dead after fraternity party wants answers | USA TODAY


"He had his whole life to live." A family mourns and demands answers after 19-year-old Adam Oakes was found dead after a VCU Delta Chi fraternity party.

Adam Oakes’s family still can’t find his glasses.

The 19-year-old student at Virginia Commonwealth University had been wearing them in late February when he left his home. He wanted to attend an off-campus party with what he had hoped would be new friends in the Delta Chi fraternity, according to his family.

Eric, Adam’s father, didn’t know much about this fraternity, its troubled history on campus or the fact that it was recently reinstated. What’s more, he believed hazing to be a serious crime that would deter any life-threatening harm to his son. By 1 p.m. the next day when law enforcement showed up to tell him Adam died, he realized he was wrong.

The details are still unclear, but here’s what the family says they know based on conversations they have had with people at the party: Adam was given alcohol and expected to drink. He passed out the floor. In the morning, he was purple and without a pulse, and that’s when 911 was called.

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  2. That’s terrible. It sounds like he was just trying to fit in with his peers and drank too much. If it was hazing that’s a different story. My condolences to his family.

    1. You can say don’t give in to peer pressure but at that age acceptance among your peers is SO IMPORTANT. It is how teenagers break away from their family and establish their independent identity apart apart from the tight, loving family they grew up in. It is a natural thing every child goes through. The fault lay with the adults supervising these fraternities. I am in shock hazing still happens given the media coverage in recent years. It has to stop, it is a form of bullying. The boy trusted that these older classmates had his back, that is why he wanted to be part of the group, but they didn’t have his back. They betrayed the trust that is suppose to be inherent in the joining of the fraternity. The adults in charge are to blame, not the new initiate.

  3. The sad world of today. They just left him to die. Shame on them through the rest of their lives.

  4. “The Health and Safety of our chapter communities is always a top priority for the Delta Chi Fraternity”. Obviously not… you didn’t supervise the party and you don’t ban these hazing rites they promote. The head of the fraternity is to blame. These are KIDS, who don’t have enough of life’s experience to understand what to do and what not to do. Where was the supervisor? It was a fraternity after all. Parents trust the colleges and groups at the college to guide the students as they continue to grow and mature in intelligence and common sense. I am so sick of these ideas that holding your liquor is a sign of manhood. SERIOUSLY? My daughter is dead due to these insane ideas fostered in American colleges, that you’re accepted in the group, among your peers, if you can’t guzzle it down.

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