Adam Oakes was found dead by peers on Saturday morning after a party at the Delta Chi frat house at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond.
His devastated family are adamant that he died as a result of a ‘hazing process that went too far’ and that friends have revealed he ‘drank a handle of Jack Daniels’ and hit his head.
‘It’s a hole in my heart that will never be healed,’ Oakes’ father Eric said before turning away from an
Adam Oakes, 19, was found dead by peers on Saturday morning after a night of drinking at the Delta Chi frat house at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond. He is pictured right and left, in an image from an
Adam’s father Eric broke down as he spoke to a reporter over the weekend
VCU and the national chapter of Delta Chi suspended the fraternity after Richmond Police Department opened an investigation into the death.
Oakes’ family believe there are many unanswered questions about what happened during Friday night’s drinking session.
‘We think it’s part of the hazing process and that it went too far,’ Oakes’ cousin, Courtney White, told NBC.
White said that friends of Adam told them that he had been so drunk that he hit his head on a tree.
They said that at some point in the night he passed out and that when they checked on him at around midnight he was still breathing and lying on his side.
But the following morning, they discovered him face down on the couch.
‘And when they rolled him over half his face was purple,’ White said.
Oakes’ cousin Courtney White with his father Eric speaking to reporters over the weekend. The family are adamant there was hazing at the party
The frat house (purple) on Clay Street in Richmond, VA
Police officers outside the frat house
A teenage Adam Oakes is pictured with an unknown woman
Friends and family said Adam was excited to join the fraternity and said that he expected to be paired up with an ‘older brother’ on Friday night.
His dorm roommate Alec Cardullo-Munoz described the moment that Adam learned his bid to join had been successful.
‘He came into the room all giddy and said the president gave him a bid,’ Cardullo-Munoz told
His father said he had backed his son’s decision to join the frat with some friends of his from Patomac Falls High School in Loudoun County.
‘He wanted to impress them and be part of the brotherhood,’ Eric Oakes told ABC.
‘Because pretty much he has no classes that are in person, he’s at the dorm, he’s locked down.’
Richmond Police Department have not yet confirmed Adam’s cause of death and are awaiting the results of an autopsy.
The family say they want ‘justice for Adam’ and to stop something like this happening to another young student in the future.
‘We want some answers, you know, we deserve answers,’ Eric Oakes said. ‘Adam deserves answers.’
Adam Oakes, from Loudon County, had been given his father’s blessing to join the fraternity
Oakes was overjoyed to be invited to join the fraternity having spent much of the semester on lockdown in his dorm
President of VCU, Michael Rao, tweeted: ‘We are heartbroken at the tragic loss of one of our own. I offer my heartfelt sympathies to Adam’s loved ones and closest friends. @VCU will continue to work closely with local law enforcement as the investigation develops.’
In a tweet, his old school said: ‘We are deeply saddened to hear of the sudden passing of a PFHS graduate, Adam Oakes. Adam played football at PFHS and loved to cheer for our many athletic programs. If you’re able to help out, here’s a link below. We will miss your spirit, Adam.’
VCU suspended Delta Chi from August 2018 to August 2019 for failing to comply with university requirements.
The college requires frats to comply with event registrations, attendance and academic performance