Anyone who knew Adam Levine, the University of Miami student, not the celebrity, can tell you how infectious his smile and personality were. Although he passed away Friday night at Jackson Memorial Hospital after attending day one of Ultra Music Festival, his spirit lives on.
Levine was a member of Alpha Epsilon Pi, a fraternity on campus. When his frat brothers heard about his death, they began selling T-shirts in his honor. UM sophomore Drew Winig came up with the idea to raise funds to plant a tree in Levine's memory at the school. Additionally, the brothers will donate to Camp Harlam, a Jewish summer camp in the Pocono Mountains, which Levine loved.
The shirts are white with a quote from Levine himself: "Like the celebrity, but better."
Winig says it was the most fitting quote for the shirt, though Levine had many one-liners. “If you ever met Adam, this was probably the first thing he said to you, and it truly embodies who he was — a celebrity, but better.”
The shirts are for sale via shopzerodaze.com/adam-levine for $15 and are being hand-printed by the fraternity. They are available for pickup at the Coral Gables campus or can also be shipped. Winig says they have been overwhelmed with support from the community and have received more than 200 orders. It is a testament to how beloved Levine was.
When news of his death spread, his Facebook account was flooded with messages. Everyone from classmates to family members began recalling times they had shared with him. Many expressed their disbelief at his untimely death, the cause of which is still unknown. Winig remembers him as being “somebody in the fraternity that everyone could talk to because he made everyone feel comfortable and always had jokes to tell.”
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Levine was a senior political science major. He was a highly involved student working with many organizations on campus. He joined Student Government his freshmen year and continued his involvement even while studying abroad in Australia. Current student government president, senior Brianna Hathaway, recalls how much Levine influenced her: “Adam always pushed me to reach for the stars and was my biggest cheerleader through everything I endeavored to achieve.”
Adam was 21 when he passed. But his jokes, his warmth, and his smile live on in the memory of every person whose life he made brighter. As the shirts say, he was better than the celebrity.
Adam C. Levine memorial T-shirts can be purchased at shopzerodaze.com/adam-levine. All proceeds will go toward a tree and plaque in his memory at the University of Miami.