By Alana Feldman
Members of Pi Beta Phi sorority commemorated Thursday National GORDIEday, remembering and honoring the death of Lynn Gordon Bailey Jr. (“Gordie”). Gordie was a student at the University of Colorado at Boulder when he was found dead at Chi Psi Fraternity on Sept. 17, 2004.
Gordie was 18 years old and a freshman at the university when he decided to pledge Chi Psi Fraternity. On his “bid night” he and his pledge brothers were encouraged to drink large amounts of alcohol, causing Gordie to become extremely intoxicated. He was found dead the next morning on the couch his brothers had placed him on at the end of the night to let him “sleep it off.”
The Gordie Foundation was established after his death and describes it mission as to “provide today’s young people with the skills to navigate the dangers of alcohol, binge drinking, peer pressure and hazing.”
As a tribute to National GORDIEday, 1,700 small flags were scattered covering the HUB lawn Thursday.
“The flags are to represent the 1,700 students who die each year from alcohol-related incidents,” explained Pi Beta Phi’s Vice President of Member Development Sarah Rupp (sophomore-supply chain management).
Pi Beta Phi has recently added the Gordie Foundation as one of their sorority’s philanthropies. Rupp also mentioned that the foundation is open for all chapters’s to join and donate towards.
At 8 p.m. on Sept. 24, a candlelight vigil was held for Joseph Dado, the Penn State freshman recently deceased on campus, as an ending to National GORDIEday. His death has been said to be alcohol-related, connecting it to the remembrance of Gordie.
Many members of sorority life were in attendance to remember and honor Dado’s death. The women were asked to share what they have learned from this incident and their feelings on the event.
Freshman Stacey Zarko, a member of Kappa Delta sorority, mentioned that the incident “made me think about how much I take for granted…and the importance of looking out for everyone.” A moment of silence was held and candles were lit in memory of the deceased.
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