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It doesn’t snow much down here. Outside of a few trips to the mountains of Colorado and a freak incident in Utah, I’ve never experienced snow deeper than an inch, which melted before noon. With that said, I have never thought of incorporating what nature freely provides as a way of amplifying the intensity of my hazing. However, wet grass and 80 degree temperatures aren’t as intimidating as ice and mountains of snow.
After allegedly failing to complete their chores in a manner that was satisfactory to the actives, a few Nu Alpha Phi pledges at Syracuse University were forced to complete 30 minutes of aerobic exercises in the snow outside the chapter’s house.
A 20-year-old pledge said they spent about 30 minutes doing push ups, sit ups and crawling exercises in the snow, instead of the fraternity’s attic of 739 Ackerman Ave., where punishments usually take place. He said they were wearing hooded sweatshirts, pants, boots and no gloves.
Normally, this wouldn’t be a big deal. I’m sure the pledges could afford losing a little blubber. There is one small piece of information that turns this into a bit of a medical issue, though. Those last two words, “no gloves,” mean a lot when the ground is covered in snow and the temperatures are below freezing. Knowing that prolonged exposure to extreme elements can cause frostbite should be common knowledge. Sadly, that doesn’t seem to be the case here, and one of the pledges may be paying the price for the actives’ ignorance.
When the exercises were done, the pledge said they were given hand warmers and told to walk back to the fraternity. The victim said he went home and ran his hands under warm water, but they still hurt.
He went to Crouse Hospital the next day when the pain didn’t stop. He was told he has severe frostbite and could lose four fingers — his ring and pinkie fingers on both hands.
Poor guy. You can’t help but feel for him. He could’ve been the world’s most incompetent pledge (a lofty title) but nobody deserves to lose nearly half of his fingers to frostbite.
In response to the incident, Syracuse police investigated the event and took two actives into custody.
Tae Kim, 19, of 401 Euclid Ave, and Jeffrey Yam, 21, of 1111 Madison St., are charged with misdemeanor first-degree hazing.
Nobody emerged a winner in this situation..
Image via Syracuse University