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Penn State Temporarily Suspends Fraternity After 17-Year-Old Dies At Off-Campus House

State College police truck
Anne Danahy

A Penn State fraternity has been put on “interim suspension,” after a 17-year-old died Saturday night at an off-campus house in State College. The university said Tuesday the West College Avenue house is allegedly occupied by Chi Phi members, although it is not the fraternity’s official house.

Erie News Now reported that high school Senior John “Jack” Schoenig was a student at Cathedral Prep School in Erie. Schoenig and friends were visiting State College. Erie News Now reported Schoenig is listed as a senior and forward on the Cathedral Prep hockey team. 

Schoenig was pronounced dead at the scene after he became unconscious and experienced shallow breathing. According to State College Police, when police arrived with Centre LifeLink EMS, they found found him in full cardiac arrest. There were no signs of trauma, and several witnesses were there when Schoenig became unconscious. 

State College Police and the Penn State Office of Student Conduct are investigating. The university said the Alpha Delta Chapter of Chi Phi fraternity is on interim suspension pending the outcome of the investigations. According to the university, the suspension means Chi Phi can't participate in any universitywide events as an organization.

Anne Danahy is a reporter at WPSU. She was a reporter for nearly 12 years at the Centre Daily Times in State College, Pennsylvania, where she earned a number of awards for her coverage of issues including the impact of natural gas development on communities.
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