Fraternity Pledge Dies at U. of Colorado

Police investigators planned to resume their probe Monday into the death of a University of Colorado (search) student, found dead in the fraternity house where he'd just been accepted as a pledge.

Officers found the body of Lynn Gordon Bailey Jr. (search), 18, in a first-floor library of the Chi Psi (search) house on Friday after someone called 911. His death occurred within a matter of hours after he had called his mother to tell her the news of his acceptance, and of his obtaining a spot on the club lacrosse (search) team.

Authorities found him with smudged ink marks on his face.

Police spokeswoman Julie Brooks said they had not determined whether alcohol was a factor in Bailey's death, and an autopsy and toxicology report were pending.

"He had it all, he was absolutely at the top," his aunt, Lyn Feldman, said from Dallas. "He was thrilled about making the lacrosse team, and he was so excited about joining the fraternity."

A candlelight vigil with Bailey's parents was held late Sunday at the Chi Psi fraternity house.

Feldman said Bailey considered himself an athlete and did not have a drinking problem, although it was possible he was celebrating Thursday night.

She released a statement from the family, which said, "We are heartbroken over the tragic loss of our son, L. Gordon Bailey Jr. Gordie's life may have been short-lived, but he lived it fully with humor, affection, optimism, integrity and honor. Our tragedy is widely shared by all of those who had the privilege of knowing him."

Bailey's father, Lynn G. Bailey of Sun Valley, Idaho, and his stepfather, Michael Lanahan of Dallas, were on campus Saturday.

Five family members met late Saturday with Sam Bessey, executive director of the Chi Psi national organization, he said Sunday. Family members also met with CU-Boulder Chancellor Richard L. Byyny on Saturday.

Bailey also is survived by mother, Leslie Lanahan, of Dallas, stepmother, Claire Bailey, of Sun Valley and a 14-year-old sister.

Bailey was the captain of the varsity football team during his senior year at Deerfield Academy (search), a boarding school in Massachusetts. He also played lacrosse and performed in the school's production of Arthur Miller's "The Crucible."

Mike Silipo, a Deerfield football coach and history teacher, described Bailey as an outgoing, mature young man.

"He was a nice player and a good kid," he said. "He was a song-and-dance man, too. He was just a really personable, outgoing young man. He was not afraid to get in front of anybody."

Bessey said he planned to stay in Boulder until Monday to help the fraternity's members. Chi Psi's national charter has been suspended, but the men were allowed to remain in the home.

Social activities at the university's Greek houses have been suspended indefinitely by the Interfraternity Council, which governs fraternities at CU. The university also plans a review of its relationship with the Greek system.

Gov. Bill Owens said Bailey's death and the death of a CSU student earlier this month were wake up calls. Samantha Spady (search), a 19-year-old sophomore in Fort Collins, died of alcohol poisoning at the Sigma Pi fraternity on Sept 5.

"We need to take the scourge of alcoholism very seriously, realizing it can kill, not just on the roads, but it can also kill as we've seen on these universities, perhaps just from overuse," he said.