Toms River student dies days after fall from frat house roof
MORGANTOWN, Va. — A Toms River South graduate died after falling from a roof of a building at the University of West Virginia.
Sean Guthrie, a 20-year-old junior engineering major and a member of the Kappa Alpha Order fraternity, died Wednesday morning after being taken off life support on Tuesday, according to UVW spokeswoman April Kaull. Guthrie was an organ donor.
"The University sends its condolences to Sean’s family and friends, who came together Monday night in a vigil to honor Sean," Kaull said in a statement.
Kaull said the family had been in Morgantown since Guthrie fell from the roof of the Kappa Alpha fraternity after smoking a cigarette early Sunday morning. He fell while trying to get back inside around 4:15 a.m.
"The entire High School South community is shocked by the tragic news regarding Sean Guthrie," Toms River South Principal James Ricotta Jr. said in a statement. "Sean, a 2014 graduate was a highly involved and spirited member of our Tribe. Sean will be remembered as a scholar, taking a full schedule of Advanced Placement and Honors level classes in the top 10 percent of his class. His voice filled our halls daily as a part of the morning announcement team, Student Council member, National Honor Society Member, and also involved with Key Club, Science League, and Spirit Club. Sean was a highly motivated and spirited student who has loved by all."
"Our thoughts and prayers are with Sean’s family and friends," district spokeswoman Tammi Millar added.
A vigil for Guthrie is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. Thursday at the Toms River High School football field. Sara Whitman, a Hofstra University student from Beachwood considered Guthrie her best friend said they kept in contact but didn't spend much time together in recent years but were planning to rectify that. "We didn't talk as much. He texted me over the summer and I feel so bad because I really couldn't text him because I was away in Rome. He was like 'oh we should get together' but we never did and it sucks."
Whitman said friends from all over have said they are coming to the vigil. "He was a very well liked guy. He was so kind and caring and concerned about all his friends. He was always there if you needed help. He was always in good spirits about everything. He was always so funny and be there to lighten up the day."
A similar incident involving a Toms River South graduate at the same university occurred in 2012. Brian Weithenauer died after a fall from a platform outside a second-story window of an off-campus apartment during a party.
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