A 20-year-old sophomore at Bowling Green State University is fighting for his life after being found in “dire” condition following a fraternity hazing incident. Stone Foltz was rushed to a hospital early Friday after he was found by his roommates following what one fellow student described as a “deathly” and “crazy” alcohol-related hazing event.
Just over 24 hours later, Foltz’s family has found itself facing the unthinkable: beginning the process to donate his organs.
“Please have respect, be considerate and passionate. Please don’t post comments on details of what you heard. Stone is still with us for the time as we go thru the process to donate his organs. Hug your children and tell them everyday how much you love them,” read a statement from Foltz’s mother, shared with local media by an attorney for the family.
The 20-year-old had attended an off-campus event for the BGSU chapter of the Pi Kappa Alpha International Fraternity on Thursday night where pledges were pressured to drink “copious” amounts of alcohol, according to Sean Alto, the attorney for the family.
A Bowling Green student who spoke to news outlet WTOL 11 on the condition of anonymity said pledges were told to drink “a handle of any alcohol” given to them and “finish the whole thing in the time we’re there before we leave.”
A handle of alcohol contains nearly 40 shots.
“It’s crazy to me that they can allow this deathly and neglectful drinking to go on. I think it’s incredible to me that they try to hide themselves behind this organization,” the student said.
The university said it was aware of the “alleged hazing activity involving alcohol consumption” at an off-campus event and has “placed this fraternity on interim suspension as we work with local law enforcement.”
The fraternity has issued a statement saying it is “horrified and outraged” by the hazing incident.
“The fraternity has a zero-tolerance policy toward illegal activity, substance abuse, bullying, and hazing of any kind. Let us reiterate in the strongest terms: We refuse to defend or condone any behavior that creates dangerous environments or situations for our members or the larger campus community at any of our 200+ chapters in the United States and abroad,” the statement said.
The fraternity said it is cooperating with an investigation and has suspended the chapter involved in the incident. Bowling Green police confirmed that an investigation was underway but gave no further details.
Foltz graduated from Buckeye Valley High School in Ohio in 2019 and was said to be active in various sports.
Tragically, he has wound up on life support just a few months after a law meant to crack down on hazing slowed to a halt in the Ohio Senate.
“It happens year after year after year. It’s been going on for a long time, and these young men in these fraternities who are given the reins to power, they just don’t seem to get what they’re doing is wrong,” Alto was quoted saying by WTOL 11. “It causes serious, catastrophic, life-altering harm and death. And they just don’t seem to get it. And, you know, one of the things that I’m hopeful for is that this year, the Ohio legislators (could) pass Collin’s Law, which was introduced last year but didn’t make it.”
As for Foltz’s family, Alto said that “they’re focused on their son right now. I expect they’re going to take it hour by hour, day by day.”