The 19-year-old freshman who was rushed to the hospital Tuesday afternoon has died after an apparent suicide, his parents said Thursday evening.
Benjamin Asma, a biomedical engineering major who lived in West Hall, was remembered by family members and friends as a compassionate and kind person with a “contagious smile” who became fast friends with many of his classmates.
A native of Lake Bluff, Ill., Asma was a member of the University Honors Program, the Beta Theta Pi fraternity and the club swimming team. He had wanted to become a doctor like his grandfather and uncle, and he was an active runner and swimmer, his family said Thursday at a memorial service on the terrace of the Marvin Center.
“What a sweet and kind and easygoing and brilliant boy he was, and we were so excited he was here,” his mother, Leann, told more than 100 friends, family members, administrators and faculty.
Asma’s mother said her son will remain on a ventilator in the GW Hospital until Friday so his organs can be donated, which she said would help others find “miracles.”
The service was also held to remember Lynley Redwood, a senior who also lived in West Hall, who was found dead in her fourth-floor room on Tuesday morning. Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Araz Alali said officers are not investigating her death as a homicide, but could not yet release additional information.
Campus police officers had found Asma unconscious in his second-floor West Hall bedroom on Tuesday afternoon.
He is survived by his parents, Leann and Benjamin, and his two siblings.
- Sarah Ferris contributed reporting.