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Archive for Sunday, March 8, 2009

Student found dead at KU fraternity

Police are working to figure out what led to the death of a KU student at his fraternity house on Sunday.

March 8, 2009, 5:21 p.m. Updated March 8, 2009, 9:02 p.m.

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A Sigma Alpha Epsilon member was found dead Sunday afternoon at the Kansas University fraternity, 1301 West Campus Road.

Lawrence police identified the deceased KU student as Jason Christopher Wren, 19, of Littleton, Colo. Though the cause of death hasn’t been determined, foul play was not immediately suspected, said Capt. Ray Urbanek.

“There’s still a lot to do,” he said.

Police said they were called shortly after 2:30 p.m. to the fraternity house, where they found Wren unresponsive.

“He went to bed last night and he obviously didn’t wake up this morning,” said Urbanek.

Urbanek said an autopsy would likely be performed to determine the cause of death.

Fraternity members did not return calls for comment. An adult at the fraternity house, who identified himself only as a KU greek leader, said there were no chapter events going on at the house Saturday night.

Members of the fraternity met for a group meeting at the house shortly after 7 p.m. Sunday, the adult leader said.

KU spokeswoman Jill Jess sent an e-mailed statement Sunday night. “Counselors are being made available to the membership and others who knew the deceased,” she said. “Our hearts go out to family and friends on this sad day.”

Comments

HW 5 years, 1 month ago

As with the majority so far, my condolences to family, friends and brothers. The brotherhood that many greek members share is just as strong as most of their familial relationships.

That said, I agree with logic. If you don't agree with the posting on these topics, don't post. Along the same lines, if you don't agree with people posting anonymously, then don't post anonymously. Step up to the standards you want to set for others. There are many good reasons to post anonymously.

Third, the LJW has a pretty good policy already. Once somebody requests removal, it doesn't take long for Jonathan and the others to remove the post. Practice some self control and don't read the comments if your going to get your feelings hurt.

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logicsound04 5 years, 1 month ago

First and foremost, my condolences to the friends and family of this student, regardless of the circumstances of his death.

Second, if you are responding to or arguing about inflammatory comments on the LJWorld forum, you are doing exactly what the inflammatory poster wants you to do. Suggest removal and ignore--that is the most effective and expedient way to get rid of insensitive comments.

Third, for what it's worth, the KC Star is actually allowing comments on this very same story, so the LJWorld is not alone in allowing forum participants to police themselves. That is usually the best way anyway--let those who spend the most time reading and posting determine what they can or can't accept in terms of conduct on the forum.

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commentator_on_the_axe 5 years, 1 month ago

There's no tragedy in life like the death of a child. Things never get back to the way they were.

Habits in writing as in life are only useful if they are broken as soon as they cease to be advantageous.

A good newspaper, I suppose, is a nation talking to itself.

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redmoonrising 5 years, 1 month ago

Condolences to the family and friends of this young man. I have never lost a child but have known others who have. It is a life changing event, for many one that takes away any sense of a normal life for years or even a lifetime afterwards. It would be ideal if we all wrote posts as if they were being written to us if the situation were reversed.

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Pywacket 5 years, 1 month ago

Get over yourself, lkwjr. You're the biggest hypocrite here. That last line was truly mature and classy---not!

Note to misguided censorship proponents: this is a public discussion forum, not a funeral home's "Tributes" page. While I support the LJW's pulling of any deliberately nasty comments directed at victims, I also support their policy of allowing discussion to take place on discussion forums.

Most of us here are deeply sympathetic to the anguish this family is experiencing. I, for one, expect that they have far better things to do at the moment than read and dwell on the comments of a bunch of strangers. Every parent's worst nightmare has been visited upon these people. Don't flatter yourselves (and the rest of us) by thinking that any discussion here can possibly intensify or mitigate their pain.

It's natural for people to discuss the news--whether the news is good, bad, ugly, happy, or tragic. We've moved from the water cooler to the computer screen. I don't think it matters that we post anonymously--we still have a sense of community with other posters. And this is what communities do--discuss things, go off on conversational tangents, quibble over meaning, etc. It's normal.

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JackRipper 5 years, 1 month ago

MacHeath (Anonymous) says…

I really don't think the founding fathers had anonymous forums in mind in regard to free speech. Trying to defend these forums on that basis is like trying to call graffiti “free speech”.

Oh really MacHeath? Perhaps you should refer back to the history books and find out how the founding fathers submitted and debated many of their ideas.

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The_Original_Bob 5 years, 1 month ago

Sad story. Condolences to the family.

This isn't a freedom of speech issue. It is a private company's website. They can allow whatever they want to be posted.

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slowplay 5 years, 1 month ago

Eliminate anonymous posting.

Condolences to the family and all who knew him.

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MacHeath 5 years, 1 month ago

I really don't think the founding fathers had anonymous forums in mind in regard to free speech. Trying to defend these forums on that basis is like trying to call graffiti "free speech".

My condolences to friends, and family. Its very hard to deal with this sort of unexpected loss.

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jonas_opines 5 years, 1 month ago

Not to call referenced poster a coward, for that matter. As near as I read, there were no particularly offensive comments from that source, and the defense was of other posters.

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jonas_opines 5 years, 1 month ago

"Oh…right. Freedom of speech should only exist if it's something you agree with… Even truly tasteless jokes and comments should be allowed. If you don't like them, don't read them."

Freedom of speech of course only refers to the actions of the government. As a private company running a semi-public website, the LJWorld has the freedom to institute whatever policy they choose to. Cencorship is, to my mind, somewhat acceptable on the forum for the extraordinary cases, because frankly the online, detached and anonymous nature of internet posting removes its posters from the primary consequences of uncivilized speech. That being, if they said some of these things in real life, especially at a wake or a funeral, they'd get decked.

There is a place for alternative viewpoints, of course. But to hide personal offensiveness (particularly offensiveness with no other point to it) behind the guise of Freedom of Speech is the hallmark of the true coward.

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drugcompton 5 years, 1 month ago

ocean- while i agree with your 2nd comment, did you think no one would catch the first? what is real sad here is that this young man with a full life ahead of him is gone...and that a waste of space like Marion breathes on...life is pretty unfair

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lkwjr 5 years, 1 month ago

Wow! What a bunch of typical pretentious Lawrence D-bags. This is an article about a dead kid and you guys you use it as a forum to bicker back and forth and try to give grammar lessons and make yourself appear smarter than each other. Shut Up! Someone's very young son is dead. Try to show him some respect even if he was a jayhawk.

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SpeedRacer 5 years, 1 month ago

It is unfortunate that such a sad story should have to be the place for discussing LJW policy. I wish that the comments section were the type that allowed a reply to the comment made so that if the comment were removed, all replies went with it. Anyone who has posted here for a long time knows there will always be people who post inappropriate or inflammatory comments, and we often know who to expect that from.

For the rest who who are making a visit to the site because of a relationship to the story, my apologies for those who are inconsiderate and my condolences on your loss.

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Bill Thompson 5 years, 1 month ago

I guess I fail to understand why the ljworld allows comments on a sensitive story like this??? The KC Star and the Wichita Eagle do not allow commenting on this type of story; the ljworld should follow their lead!

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 1 month ago

The rest of us, I think it fair to say, consider the loss of anyone so young, so full of potential, so beloved to family and friends, a tragedy whatever the cause of that loss.

*however he died, this is a tragedy! there were hopes and plans unfulfilled, parents' pride and love, now replaced by hurt and loss. friends who enjoyed his company and his comradship now find a gaping hole in their lives and hearts. his own aspirations will not be pursued, cannot be pursued.

I'd say that's a tragedy.

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Hoots 5 years, 1 month ago

I hope this doesn't end up another binge drinking or drug overdose story like at so many other schools. To be gone at 19 is rough.

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Danimal 5 years, 1 month ago

It's always a sad thing when young people die.

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Pywacket 5 years, 1 month ago

First, my condolences to the family and friends of this young man. I have two kids at KU and cannot even begin to fathom the horror of losing either of them.

Have to respond to Fatty--- If you would look up the historical meaning of tragedy, you'd realize that your assertion is completely backward. Classic Greek (with a capital "G") tragedy refers specifically to someone being brought low (maybe killed, maybe not) by his own flawed nature--pride, hubris, etc. It very specifically did NOT refer to someone dying of cancer, etc.

Common usage of the word nowadays is more inclusive--now, most of us would call it a tragedy when a young person dies of cancer, someone is killed in a car accident, a fire, or a tornado.

But, while the word has taken on broader meaning, it has never excluded its original designation--it is still considered a tragedy when a person's own error or flaw leads to his own downfall or death.

When that person is young, the greatest weight of that tragedy is that he/she probably would have overcome that flaw if given more time and chances.

So, whether you are or are not implying anything about this particular young man's death, your quibbling over the use of the term "tragedy" is unnecessary and based on erroneous understanding of the word. What's your point? If you are waiting for the coroner's report so you can pass judgment and declare to the world whether or not this was a tragedy, you'd do well to understand the word before issuing your grand decision.

The rest of us, I think it fair to say, consider the loss of anyone so young, so full of potential, so beloved to family and friends, a tragedy whatever the cause of that loss.

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Marion Lynn 5 years, 1 month ago

bad_dog (Anonymous) says…

Oh and condolences to the family. I can't think of anything more tragic than the death of your child-regardless of the circumstances.."

Marion writes:

Thanks BD.

Couldn't have been written better.

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KansasPerson 5 years, 1 month ago

Good luck on getting the J-W to change their comments policy. 106 comments after this LTE last summer, lots of discussion, J-W even asked for feedback, and I guess they just decided to leave it the way it is.

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tsweat 5 years, 1 month ago

fatty i really hope u are not implying jason did something moronic. this was a tragedy, plain and simple. my prayers go out to the family members

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Fatty_McButterpants 5 years, 1 month ago

Haggerty, you can't be serious when you say that "every death is a tragedy"? Death is a part of life. It's not a tragedy. It's a tragedy when someone loses their life through no fault of their own - murder, cancer, etc. But if someone does something moronic (no, I'm not saying that's the case here) and gets dies as a result, or is 98 years old, it's not a tragedy. It's life.

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Fatty_McButterpants 5 years, 1 month ago

Heaven forbid someone post an offensive comment! That might actually test our freedom of speech. Oh...right. Freedom of speech should only exist if it's something you agree with... Even truly tasteless jokes and comments should be allowed. If you don't like them, don't read them.

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ocean 5 years, 1 month ago

d haggerty is correct.

community standards and common sense should govern control of a discussion forum. mom of three is incorrect. there is not a good purpose in some post here.

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bad_dog 5 years, 1 month ago

Oh and condolences to the family. I can't think of anything more tragic than the death of your child-regardless of the circumstances..

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bad_dog 5 years, 1 month ago

If you review ralphralph's comment history, this is at least the 3rd time he's posted sarcastic comments regarding a death. Perhaps it's time for a disappearing act...

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sourpuss 5 years, 1 month ago

How sad. I hope the family finds meaning and peace in their loss.

I actually agree with you, mom_of_three. I have learned more about the community of Lawrence reading these comments than I had in the 27 years I lived there. I like it a lot less now.

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mom_of_three 5 years, 1 month ago

I understand this is a tragic situation for all involved, but this is a forum for discussion. Not all people will be apologetic and caring. It's not the way the world is, but how we would like it to be. There will be some stupid comments, (and it seems solely for the attention that they get). Should the LJW be responsible for that? NO. Should the LJW change their policy? NO. Because that would be letting them win.
Once again, if you don't think you will like what is written, then don't read it. Although it's within their power to do so, I hope the LJW doesn't restrict which articles are allowed comment. Sometimes a lot can be learned by understanding someone else's position.

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d_haggerty 5 years, 1 month ago

Last semester, a student of mine was killed in a car crash. The Journal-World ran a story about it, and of course there were the requisite snide comments on the website. Any death is a tragedy, and the people who leave disrespectful comments on such events are clearly too oblivious to realize this.

I'm usually in favor of any type of online discussion, but in the case of a death I don't believe that ljworld.com should allow comments on their website.

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JoRight 5 years, 1 month ago

I'm not speculating here, so please do not jump on me.

It's a sad sad day for KU, SAE & the greek community. Everyone should always keep in mind safety & hopefully, there will be good to come out of this situation.

Thoughts & prayers for everyone involved.

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75x55 5 years, 1 month ago

Condolences to family and friends.

LJW - is it possible to turn off this comment section on particularly sensitive stories such as this?

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kuballa23 5 years, 1 month ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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bearded_gnome 5 years, 1 month ago

dstavin (Anonymous) says…

It's time for the Journal-World to step up and take some responsibility for the consistently uncivilized tone of this public forum.

---no, as far as I can tell there was one rude jerk laughing at a death story. otherwise, and overwhelmingly, posters have been humane, concerned and caring. free speech is free, not necessarily pretty.


God grant peace to all who knew him, and to his parents most of all. there are many potential causes for an "unattended death."

SAE men, we'll be praying for you. many in the community do care about you college students.

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audibleangel 5 years, 1 month ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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verity 5 years, 1 month ago

dstavin---I agree.

My thoughts are with the family and friends in this very difficult time.

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Deb Stavin 5 years, 1 month ago

It's time for the Journal-World to step up and take some responsibility for the consistently uncivilized tone of this public forum.

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TacoBob 5 years, 1 month ago

rgh, no I did not, and am not taking a shot at you for commenting on it. Glad I didn't see it based on the comments. Just wondering if all references to it could be removed as it was obviously offensive and now gone. But, I have contributed to the distraction by my off topic comments. I'm going to flag myself!

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prospector 5 years, 1 month ago

To the men of Sigma Alpha Epsilon, it is my hope that peace and solice can be found in these dark times for your members. Treasure the memories of your brother and go forward with his spirit.

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Shardwurm 5 years, 1 month ago

Tragic. No matter what the cause. Just sad.

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bretherite 5 years, 1 month ago

I can't imagine what the parents are going thru. My prayers to them and the men at the SAE house.

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Bubarubu 5 years, 1 month ago

I don't take any offense, and feel free to flag mine (esp. since I quoted the original post).

On another note, my condolences to the young man's friend and family.

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rgh 5 years, 1 month ago

TacoBob,

Did you see the comment posted and why it was removed and why we were angered? I'm hoping you would have been upset and disgusted as well if you had.

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TacoBob 5 years, 1 month ago

No offense to the first 3, but how about taking down the conmments referring to a comment that is not there anymore.

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RoeDapple 5 years, 1 month ago

Ask anyone who has children what their worst fear is, this young man's parents are going through this at this very moment.

Our thoughts, our prayers are with his family

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kusp8 5 years, 1 month ago

Rather ralphralph's comment is.

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rgh 5 years, 1 month ago

ralphralph,

You should have your account and e-mail rights taken away from the Journal World.

I've asked for your post to be removed as I hope the others do also.

What a stupid post when a young person has lost his life and his family and friends facing a horrible future without him. You're pathetic!

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Bubarubu 5 years, 1 month ago

"If this were one of those “Lawyer Joke” riddles..." But it's not. A person has died, and the best this idiot can come up with is wishing he had a better setup for a joke. Like the Amber Alert from the other day, I sincerely hope the idiot's comment gets removed and the kid's family and friends don't ever have to see what a fool this person is.

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prospector 5 years, 1 month ago

ralphralph, you are a sick jerk!

Just pathetic.

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ralphralph 5 years, 1 month ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

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