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Police Investigating Death Of 19-Year-Old
Updated May 5, 2013 12:11 AM | Filed under: WBIW News
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(KOKOMO) - A Kokomo teenager was found unresponsive inside a family friends home, Sunday morning.

Marisela Burgos, of Fox 59, reports that 19-year-old Tanner Barton stayed at a friend's house Saturday night. The home is located west of Kokomo.

The Howard County Sheriff's Office stated Barton had fallen asleep on the floor in the basement of the home and was found unresponsive Sunday morning around 9:24.

According to the press release issued by the department, "Barton had consumed alcohol while at the residence". Authorities said it was unclear how much alcohol may have been consumed. FOX 59 spoke with Barton's family who said they were told alcohol was not a factor and that it could have been a medical condition. An autopsy is scheduled for this morning.

Meanwhile, Sunday evening Barton's family members and friends gathered outside Barton's parents' home in Kokomo. They lit candles and shared memories they had with Barton. The vigil lasted about an hour and a half.

"He was such a carrying, loving guy. He always had us laughing and smiling and singing," Courtney Ca'they said. Ca'they knew Barton since they were in 7th grade. They graduated high school together and were attending Marian University.

Ca'they said she would miss, "how I could call him any time of night and he'd be there. He was like a little piece of Kokomo in Indy".

Barton was a red shirt freshman for the Marian University football Knights. His coach said he had so much going for him. "He was a good student and he's also a bigger guy -good lineman and he had a great deal ahead of him. It's just so sad he's taken from us so young in his life," Marian University Head Football Coach Ted Karras said. "He was (a) really good football player. (he was a good) student. (He was) always upbeat. His teammate loved him (and) all the coaches loved him," he continued.

Barton's friends described him as a happy person.

"Tanner was really a special kind of person. If you meet him once, you don't forget," Jared Lantz said.

"(He was an) interesting guy. (He was) always happy. (He) always smiled. (He) always like to play the guitar and sing," his roommate Jake Rouch said.

Police investigating death of 19-year-old
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Police investigating death of 19-year-old
Marisela Burgos

5:58 p.m. EDT, April 22, 2012
(KOKOMO) - A Kokomo teenager was found unresponsive inside a family friends home, Sunday morning.

19-year-old Tanner Barton stayed at a friend's house Saturday night. The home is located west of Kokomo. The Howard County Sheriff's Office stated Barton had fallen asleep on the floor in the basement of the home and was found unresponsive Sunday morning around 9:24. According to the press release issued by the department, "Barton had consumed alcohol while at the residence". Authorities said it was unclear how much alcohol may have been consumed. FOX 59 spoke with Barton's family who said they were told alcohol was not a factor and that it could have been a medical condition. An autopsy is scheduled for this morning.

Meanwhile, Sunday evening Barton's family members and friends gathered outside Barton's parents' home in Kokomo. They lit candles and shared memories they had with Barton. The vigil lasted about an hour and a half.

"He was such a carrying, loving guy. He always had us laughing and smiling and singing," Courtney Ca'they said. Ca'they knew Barton since they were in 7th grade. They graduated high school together and were attending Marian University.

Ca'they said she would miss, "how I could call him any time of night and he'd be there. He was like a little piece of Kokomo in Indy".

Barton was a red shirt freshman for the Marian University football Knights. His coach said he had so much going for him. "He was a good student and he's also a bigger guy -
good lineman and he had a great deal ahead of him. It's just so sad he's taken from us so young in his life," Marian University Head Football Coach Ted Karras said. "He was (a) really good football player. (he was a good) student. (He was) always upbeat. His teammate loved him (and) all the coaches loved him," he continued.

Barton's friends described him as a happy person.

"Tanner was really a special kind of person. If you meet him once, you don't forget," Jared Lantz said.

"(He was an) interesting guy. (He was) always happy. (He) always smiled. (He) always like to play the guitar and sing," his roommate Jake Rouch said.

FOX 59 contacted the home where Barton stayed last night. The person on the line said she would not comment. She mentioned she was sad by the event and was trying to cope.

On the Marian University website the following statement was issued by President Daniel J. Elsener:

"Today the Marian University community learned of the tragic loss of Tanner Barton, a freshman health and physical education major in the school of education and a member of the Marian University Knights football team. Tanner died last night. Tanner was a 2010 Associated Press All-State football standout and a 2011 graduate of Northwestern High School in Kokomo, Indiana.

On behalf of everyone at Marian University, I want to express my heartfelt condolences to Tanner's family and friends. The loss of such a promising student and athlete deeply saddens and affects us all. He will be greatly missed by his coaches, professors, and many friends.

The university is making grief counselors available on site beginning Monday morning. Students can walk in or call the Learning and Counseling Center (LCC) on the first floor of Clare Hall or at 317.955.6150. Those needing assistance this evening (Sunday) can call 317.955.6789. An on-campus memorial service is being planned for later in the week. As funeral arrangements are finalized, we will share them.



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