UCF student found dead in dorm had been sick, father says

Alyssa Michelle Lewis's cause of death not determined

Alyssa Michelle Lewis, of Jacksonville.
Alyssa Michelle Lewis, of Jacksonville.

ORLANDO, Fla. – A 19-year-old University of Central Florida student was found dead in her on-campus dorm  room Tuesday morning, campus officials said.

Alyssa Michelle Lewis, of Jacksonville, was found unresponsive in her Lake Claire apartment on campus around 10:35 a.m. after her family members called 911 to report that they were unable to get in touch with her.

Lewis's roommates had checked out of her dorm by Sunday, which is when the residence halls closed for most students, according to a news release. Lewis was a resident assistant, so she was still residing in the dorm, officials said.

Classes for the fall semester ended Saturday. Lewis was a fourth-semester student.

Her father, Bill Lewis, told News 6 partner WJXT-TV that his daughter had recently been dealing with headaches and vomiting. He said his wife took a trip to UCF on Tuesday to take their daughter to a doctor.

"She's banging on the door and she's trying to call. Alyssa's not answering. My other daughter shows up with her and they have to go get someone to let them in the dorm room from housing," Bill Lewis said. "They go in and find Alyssa passed away."

A cause of death has not been determined, but based on their initial findings, investigators do not believe the death was suspicious, saying there is "no threat to the campus community."

Bill Lewis said he wanted to dispel any rumors regarding his daughter's death. 

"The reason I'm doing this is because there are so many crazy stories out there when a young person passes away. Is it drugs? Is it overdose? Is it suicide?" he said. "I mean, she was on top of the world. She finally got accepted as an RA."

“We offer our most sincere sympathies to Alyssa’s family and loved ones, and we will make all of our resources available to support them,” said Adrienne Frame, UCF’s associate vice president and dean of students. 

Campus officials said counselors and victims advocates will be made available for family members and students. UCF Counseling Services can be reached at 407-823-2811. More information is available at caps.sdes.ucf.edu.

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