Southern Adventist University identifies student found deceased in off-campus housing

Southern Adventist University identifies student found deceased in off-campus housing

This story was updated on Feb. 7, 12:00 p.m. with more information.

A resident living in off-campus, Southern Adventist University-owned housing was found deceased in the bottom floor apartment of the house at 4679 University Dr. on the night of Feb. 6, according to a statement from Collegedale police spokeswoman Bridgett Raper. 

She also wrote that no foul play is suspected.

On Friday, Feb. 7, Southern confirmed by email that the resident was student Chris Whittington, a religious studies major. 

The email reads as follows:

Dear Campus Family,


It is with heavy hearts that we announce the recent passing of Chris Whittington, a religious studies major.


“Chris came to Southern with the goal of gaining an education that would enable him to better help people as well as share the gospel more effectively,” said Alan Parker, religion professor. “He will be remembered for his deep love for animals and his passionate desire to serve others.”


Counseling for students is available in the Chaplain’s office and the Student Success Center in Lynn Wood Hall, 3rd floor. Call 423.236.2782 to set up an appointment or stop by their office.


In this time of grief, we look forward to Jesus’ soon return and rely on the promises of God. “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” —Revelation 21:4

Police were called to the scene at around 5:10 p.m. for a wellness check when officers discovered the body. 

Several police officers and campus safety, as well as Vice President for Student Development Dennis Negron, were on the scene until around 9:10 p.m. 

This is a developing story.




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