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UPDATE: BGSU student Stone Foltz dies after reported hazing, family donates organs

Stone+Foltz+Memorial%2C+2021
Brionna Scebbi
Stone Foltz Memorial, 2021

Students gathered Tuesday morning for a peaceful protest in memory of Stone Foltz, who passed away on Sunday. They marched from the old, on-campus PIKE residence in the Greek village, through campus to McFall Center where many voiced their personal experiences and concerns.

The organizers of the event set up a memorial under a tree near the old house and provided pens and paper for the community to write their thoughts, feelings and personal demands.

The protest ended in a number of demands being called upon by the event’s organizers. They were also posted to Facebook in the BGSU PIKE Protest event.

“The permanent expulsion of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity on BGSU’s campuses.

Publicly and explicitly take accountability for what happened/what has happened within the structure of Fraternity and Sorority Life.

The immediate resignation of Dean Stacey Allan and the advisors to the Office of Fraternity & Sorority Life as a consequence of the ways they have enabled dangerous practices from Fraternity & Sorority Life.

Establish a unique and much clearer system for reporting harassment, hazing, assault, etc. specifically within the structure of Fraternity & Sorority Life. This system needs to involve the victims and objective third parties that have no interest in the preservation of Fraternity & Sorority Life.

Acknowledge that this is not an isolated incident and that the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity has caused irreparable harm to members of the BGSU community.”

Deputy Chief of Staff and University Spokesperson Alex Solis released a statement regarding the peaceful protest saying, “Nearly 75 students from across our community came together today to grieve the tragic loss of Stone Foltz and peacefully express their voices,” said Solis.

He continued, “We hear them. We support them, and we share in their outrage about the alleged hazing activity from Thursday night. Hazing in any form has no place at BGSU.”

Pi Kappa Alpha, Delta Beta chapter, is still on interim suspension within the University but their national headquarters has placed them on administrative suspension and advised the leaders of the chapter to fully cooperate with University administration and law enforcement.

In addition, all new member intake processes and any social events for Greek life have been suspended in wake of the event.

The University plans, “to work with third parties to conduct a comprehensive review of all student organizations and activities for more accountability and transparency,” Solis said.

On March 9, President Rogers attended a virtual meeting of the Inter-University Council of Ohio, in which Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner and all other Ohio university president’s met to discuss the topic of hazing.

“BGSU appreciates their deep care and attention to this tragic alleged hazing situation. BGSU also joins statewide support of Collin’s Law, legislation that ensures Ohio is a hazing-free state and elevates severe consequences for those unacceptable actions,” Solis said.

BGSU is pursuing its own student code of conduct investigation and continuing to work with local law enforcement.

 


Report from March 7:

BGSU student Stone Foltz dies after reported hazing, family donates organs

On Sunday, Stone Foltz passed away after his family made the decision to donate his organs to those in need. He was 20 years old and a sophomore in the Allen W. and Carl M. Schmidthorst College of Business.

The family’s attorney Sean Alto said, “The death of Stone Foltz is a tragedy. He was a beloved son, brother, and grandson.”

Foltz was hospitalized Thursday night and was in critical condition for three days at ProMedica Toledo Hospital.

Foltz’ mother took to Facebook asking for the family’s privacy to be respected during this time. President Rodney Rogers sent an email out to the student body on March 7 at 9:21 p.m. addressing Stone’s death and sharing information about counseling services for affected students.

Condolences can be sent to the family through [email protected]. The family has also organized a Go Fund Me to “support organizations that are meaningful to Stone and his family,” “provide Memorial Scholarships” and support “additional needs of the family,” according the fundraising page.

Additionally, BGSU Deputy Chief of Staff and University Spokesperson Alex Solis released a statement saying:

“Bowling Green State University has placed Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity on interim suspension for alleged hazing activity. Local law enforcement and University investigations continue. Given that Pi Kappa Alpha is not currently recognized as a registered student organization, the fraternity’s Greek letters were removed from its on-campus residence this morning.”

Students have organized a protest for Tuesday at 11 a.m. that will begin with a moment of silence for Stone outside of the now letter-less Pike house in BGSU’s Greek Village. The students will then march to McFall Hall where the offices of the university president and provost are located, according to the protest event page on Facebook. Protest organizers demand for the resignation of Assistant Dean of Students for Fraternity and Sorority Life Stacy Allan along with the advisers for FSL.

A petition in support of a no second chances hazing policy” to replace the current anti-hazing policies at the university is also circulating.


Initial report from March 6:

BGSU student in critical condition, family preparing for organ donation after alleged Pi Kappa Alpha hazing

Pi Kappa Alpha’s (Pike) Delta Beta chapter has been put on interim suspension by BGSU due to an alleged hazing event that resulted in a student’s hospitalization.

An initial statement was released by the university on March 5 letting the community know they were aware of the situation and working with law enforcement.

BGSU Spokesperson Alex Solis wrote, “Bowling Green State University is aware of alleged hazing activity involving alcohol consumption at a Pi Kappa Alpha off-campus event on March 4. We have placed this fraternity on interim suspension as we work with local law enforcement, who are actively taking the lead in investigating this serious situation. We want to express our care and support of our students and community affected.”

Pike’s headquarters released a statement on March 6 detailing its accountability efforts.

“We have immediately placed this chapter on administrative suspension and advised its leaders to cooperate fully with University administration and local law enforcement. As more details are confirmed, we will also pursue permanent suspension of Delta Beta Chapter as well as expulsion of all chapter members from the International Fraternity,” Pike spokesperson Aranda Gehringer wrote.

The headquarters also incorrectly said the student had died, “following an alleged incident of alcohol-related hazing at an off-campus event.”

The family’s attorney spoke to reporters at WTOL and explained that the student, sophomore Stone Foltz, is still alive but in critical condition. The family and doctors are coordinating to donate his organs, Cooper Elliot law firm attorney Sean Alto said to WTOL.

BGSU released an additional statement on March 6.

“Above all, we remain committed to supporting the hospitalized student’s family and friends. They are living every loved one’s worst nightmare, and we owe them the utmost respect and privacy at this time,” the statement read.

They also asked the community to avoid posting unverified information on social media and to allow family and friends to grieve.

“While our community deserves a space to process this tragic incident we cannot censor freedom of speech. We strongly encourage those who are sharing their opinions and potentially misleading details on social media to cease and recognize that the student’s family and friends are in those same spaces reliving the trauma and grief from these comments,” the statement continued.

BGSU administrators have met with student leaders about how they will move forward with Fraternity and Sorority Life and review all other student organizations on campus, according to the statement.

The university’s hazing policy is “unconditionally opposed to any situation created intentionally to produce mental or physical discomfort, embarrassment, harassment or ridicule. Respect and cooperation among peers within registered student organizations is a guaranteed right that all students possess, regardless of  race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, color, national origin, ancestry, genetic information, pregnancy, religion, age, marital status, disability, or status as a veteran. Hazing is a Code of Student Conduct violation and a crime in Ohio.”

On Sept. 24, 2020 @BGPIKES posted to their Instagram, “We the brothers of Pi Kappa Alpha DO NOT condone hazing of any form and we hope you don’t too!” for National Hazing Prevention week. The account and post have since been made private.

Students and staff are encouraged to report any hazing activities to the Office of the Dean of Students at 419-372-2843, BGSU Police at 419-372-2346, the Hazing Hotline at  419-372-HAZE(4293) or through BGSU’s See It. Hear It. Report It. service.

Falcon Media will continue to report updates as we gather information.

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