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Cause of Los Altos High grad's death remains a mystery

Updated 12:41 p.m. Jan. 28 

Authorities don't expect to receive autopsy results for another three to four weeks in the Jan. 17 death of a Los Altos High School graduate, an employee from the Santa Clara County Medical Examiner's office said Monday. 

Eitan Weiner, a 19-year-old sophomore at Stanford, was pronounced dead at the scene by authorities responding to a report of a medical emergency Jan. 17 at Theta Delta Chi.

A preliminary investigation revealed no signs of foul play, Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office representatives said in a statement later that day.&

Eitan Weiner
Weiner

A 2018 graduate of Los Altos High, Weiner was identified as the son of two Stanford employees in a statement the university released Jan. 20. His father, Amir Weiner, is an associate professor of history; his mother, Julia Erwin-Weiner, is an associate vice president for medical center development. She was previously a senior associate dean for external relations of Stanford Law School and before that a senior administrator at the School of Humanities and Sciences.

“The university has been in close contact with the family through the weekend,” said Susie Brubaker-Cole, Stanford’s vice provost for student affairs. “We can now share that Weiner was a sophomore planning to major in history when he passed away. … I’d like to thank (Theta Delta Chi) for opening its home to the university so we could support those seeking counseling. All of us are heartbroken about this terrible loss.”

Members of the Theta Delta Chi fraternity declined to provide a comment before the Town Crier’s press deadline, but the Stanford release called Weiner a “deeply cherished member of our community.”

“We will miss his open mind and inviting presence,” the statement continued. “We are all mourning the loss of our beloved friend.”

The Stanford release also included comments from the Weiners, who did not reply to the Town Crier’s interview request prior to deadline. They described him as a well-read individual with interests that varied from politics and current events to soccer, hip-hop and rap. Weiner taught himself how to produce an album and was preparing to do so before his death.

“His family has been struck by the enormous outpouring of grief from the many people he touched throughout his life,” Brubaker-Cole said. “It is often said that a beautiful soul is never forgotten; to me, nothing is more true at a time like this.”

Weiner’s older sister, Ya’el, also attended Stanford, and his younger sister attends school nearby, according to Brubaker-Cole. No mention of the family’s Los Altos residency was included, but online records indicate they live in the city.

Mourning his loss

Those who knew Weiner at Los Altos High shared some of their thoughts with the Town Crier and on social media.

Los Altos High Principal Wynne Satterwhite touched on his creative side, exposed through his involvement with the school’s Broken Box Theatre Company, and said Weiner was a “dedicated student who challenged himself academically.”

“Eitan was a young man of humor, intelligence and great kindness who touched the lives of everyone he met,” Satterwhite said. “Students and staff who knew Eitan mourn his loss, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

Los Altos High drama teacher Nancy Moran, a member of Broken Box’s Facebook page, posted a link to Brubaker-Cole’s statement and called the loss “beyond imaginable and hard to process.”

“Eitan was funny, creative, eloquent in sharing his thoughts, a true friend, and a force who was destined to do great things,” Moran wrote. “He was the epitome of a dedicated Broken Box member who brought life and passion to the stage. I will miss him dearly.”

Both a private funeral and a university-wide celebration of life were held last week.

In lieu of flowers, the Weiner family asks that gifts be made to The Stanford Fund in his name. Donations are processed at giving.stanford.edu/the-stanford-fund.

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