A University of Nebraska-Lincoln student has been hospitalized after falling from the fire escape of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity house.
Ryan Healy, a 21-year-old from Gibsonia, Pa., was found lying on the concrete on the west side of the fraternity house.
University police responded to a call from the house at 12:25 a.m. Friday. Healy was taken to Bryan Medical Center's West Campus, where he was listed in serious condition Friday afternoon.
UNL spokesman Steven Smith said some witnesses described Healy as intoxicated prior to the fall, though it's unclear what role alcohol played in the incident.
According to UNL police, Healy had suggested he and other members of the fraternity go out onto the third-floor fire escape to smoke a cigarette. Witnesses said Healy was sitting on the fire escape railing before falling 28 feet.
Joe Lonowski, a spokesperson for Phi Gamma Delta chapter at UNL, also known as Fiji, said he and the fraternity hoped for a quick recovery for Healy.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Ryan for a speedy recovery. He's a valuable member of our fraternity,” said Lonowski. “We hope he's back with us soon.”
Healy is a junior studying economics and marketing, according to UNL's website.
According to UNL Police, the investigation is ongoing. Several witnesses who were at the fraternity house or with Healy at the time of the fall have been interviewed.
Smith said it's too early to discuss whether the university will take any action against the fraternity.
“Our first concern is the health and well-being of the student, and our thoughts are with him right now,” Smith said.
In 1993, Jeff Knoll, then 19, fell out of the third-floor window at the Phi Gamma Delta house at UNL, suffering severe head injuries. The freshman, who had pledged to the fraternity, fell as he climbed out of a bathroom window trying to escape hazing in which he was coerced to drink alcohol, university officials have said.
Knoll reached a $450,000 settlement with the Phi Gamma Delta House Corp. and its Nebraska chapter. He reached a separate $25,000 settlement with the university.