BATON ROUGE, La. -- Officials at Louisiana State University (LSU) are investigating the sudden death of a metro-Atlanta teen.
Early on in the search for answers, the signs already point to hazing. Whatever the cause, the impact of 18-year-old Max Gruver's absence is already ripping through the friends and family he left behind.
11Alive spoke with a close family friend in Roswell about the college freshman - the person - he knew. Max grew up in Roswell and graduated from Blessed Trinity Catholic High School. Just starting out at LSU, he died suddenly Wednesday night after leaving a frat house on campus.
Speaking to the media, LSU President F. King Alexander described the college community's reaction in a single word: shock.
"We in the LSU community are grieving today," LSU President F. King Alexander said. "A young man's life was cut short last night and we mourn the loss and the possible impact he may have had on our region and the world."
But his death is also being felt in metro Atlanta by friends and family.
"I didn't really even know what to think because it's just so sad," friend Jake Smith said.
Smith said he can't believe Max is gone.
"He was definitely very uplifting; always put a smile on your face," he said.
Now, Thursday night, crime scene tape wraps around the Phi Delta Theta fraternity house in Baton Rouge. Authorities said Gruver was there Wednesday night as a pledge. But Thursday morning, he was rushed to the hospital where he died.
The school's president said that right now it is a hazing investigation and it appears alcohol was involved.
"As we have continually warned over and over again, hazing is dangerous, irresponsible and unacceptable and it will not be tolerated at LSU - period," Alexander said.
The Phi Delta Theta fraternity house is suspended and so are all Greek activities on campus. An autopsy will be performed Friday morning to try and figure out what caused Max's sudden, tragic death.
Blessed Trinity High School in Roswell sent a letter home to parents letting them know about Gruver's death. They are asking for prayers not only for Max but for his family as well.