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Non-hazing athlete and sorority tragedies hit Bloomington, Ind: gymnastic team member dies after Indiana University Phi Kappa Sigma formal; Delta Zeta sorority woman dies in house

Here are two tragic losses being investigated. Please do not assume they are hazing stories. In addition to tracking hazing deaths, I keep a list of deaths involving student groups to look for certain at-risk factors in that group to encourage safety reforms in athletics and Greek life.

Dead: Christine Wampler, 21, of Indiana University after fraternity formal in Louisville.

Delta Zeta holds memorial for Nichole Birky, a sister found dead in her bed.

Repeat: these are non-hazings. Toxicology reports are not in. I’ll follow up when more is reported. Link to Indiana University Alcohol Research and Education site. Moderator Hank Nuwer, part-time instructor, IUPUI

PS:  Here is an article on online alcohol programs attempting to reduce risky collegiate alcohol consumption. 

By Hank Nuwer

Hank Nuwer is the Indiana-based author of Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His new book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press.

4 replies on “Non-hazing athlete and sorority tragedies hit Bloomington, Ind: gymnastic team member dies after Indiana University Phi Kappa Sigma formal; Delta Zeta sorority woman dies in house”

Headline has been changed to one athlete and one sorority woman. Miss Wampler was a member of the IU gymnastics team, not a sorority. Thanks to an alert reader for the correction. And our sympathies to the friends and loved ones of these two individuals.

More on Miss Wampler:
http://newsinfo.iu.edu/news/page/normal/3278.html

The unfortunate death of Miss Birky was due to natural causes, according to recent testing. Condolences to her family, sorority friends, and classmates. HN

Christine passed away because of a heart problem called myocarditus (inflamed heart).

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