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MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – A West Virginia University student found unconscious and not breathing at a fraternity house died Friday, a day after the school ordered a halt to all activities at fraternities and sororities, officials said.
Nolan Michael Burch, 18, died two days after officers were called to the Kappa Sigma house and found someone performing CPR on him. His death was confirmed by Amy Johns, a spokeswoman for WVU Healthcare. Burch was being treated at the system's Ruby Memorial Hospital.
Friends and family made the five-hour journey from Burch's home in Williamsville, New York, to the hospital to be with him.
Dominic Parisi, 18, who graduated from Canisius High School in Buffalo with Burch, said his friend played hockey and lacrosse and that he had committed to a college before anyone else at their high school.
"He knew he wanted to go to WVU before anyone else," Parisi said. "This was where he wanted to be."
Burch's Facebook page says he was studying business management.
The Morgantown chapter of Kappa Sigma had been suspended since mid-October because of other violations of the fraternity's code of conduct, according to a press release from Leo Brown, director of chapter services at Kappa Sigma. The release said the fraternity was still investigating the circumstances of the incident with Burch.
Meanwhile, the group's charter has been withdrawn and its operations closed, Brown said.
The suspended fraternity activity at WVU is in place indefinitely. The suspension follows Wednesday's incident as well as a Nov. 6 incident in which three students were arrested and 16 were cited by Morgantown police for causing a late-night disturbance in Morgantown's South Park neighborhood.
Police are investigating both incidents.
WVU President E. Gordon Gee also announced Burch's death in a press release.
"The outpouring of love and support from his friends and this community has been what you would expect from Mountaineers, and I would ask that you continue to keep the Burch family and many friends in your thoughts and prayers," he said.