Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) said one of its fraternities has been shut down and is under police investigation after a student was found dead.
Adam Oakes, a 19-year-old freshman at the university, was found dead at an off-campus residence early Saturday by police, according to a statement from VCU. (RELATED: Penn State Fraternities Suspended For Breaking COVID Rules)
VCU mourns the death of student Adam Oakes.
This is a tragic loss for Adam’s family and members of our community and we encourage any students in need of support to contact University Counseling Services at (804) 828-6200. pic.twitter.com/WiroQSQDpy
— VCU (@VCU) February 28, 2021
Oakes’ family said they were told by those who attended a party with Oakes the night before that the teen had passed out at the fraternity house following heavy drinking, NBC Washington reported.
While no cause of death has been confirmed by the authorities and the investigation into the incident remains active, VCU’s Delta Chi fraternity received a cease-and-desist order from both the fraternity’s national office and from the university, the statement said.
“We were devastated to learn of the death of a student at Virginia Commonwealth University and extend our condolences to the family, friends, and everyone touched by this heart-breaking news,” Delta Chi’s national office said in a statement.
Oakes’ cousin Courtney White told ABC News the freshman had rushed the fraternity to try and find his place on campus and this past weekend was his “big little reveal.” She also said he was an only child and the youngest cousin in their family.
A GoFundMe page was created to help Oakes’ family with the funeral costs. As of Monday, the fund has raised more than $28,000.
Oakes was described on the page as the “happiest, most joyful guy that everyone wanted to be around” and someone with a laugh “no one will ever forget.” Anyone with information about Oakes’ death is encouraged to contact Richmond Police Detective Michael Gouldman or VCU police.