Update, 5:45 p.m.: OSU spokesman Ben Johnson released a statement confirming that the woman has died.
“We are heartbroken to learn that the woman who fell from the Ohio Union South Garage today has died,” the statement reads. “On behalf of the entire community, our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Madison Paul. We have reached out to offer our support and condolences to Madison’s parents. Counseling is available for those affected by this tragedy: 614-292-5766.”
Update, 4 p.m.: Jimmy Kinderdine, a fourth-year in public affairs who works in the alumni association located in the Union, said his friend came into the office to ask for scissors because the group assisting the woman was trying to remove the “sweatshirts and clothing wrapped around her head.”
When Kinderdine got to the scene, a woman asked him to search the garage to find a form of identification for the first responders, which had not yet arrived. Kinderdine said he initially went to the third floor, because that is where many witnesses believed she fell from, but he did not find anything. He then went to the fourth floor, but he did not see anything, either. He proceeded to the top floor, he said, where he found personal items, which are believed to be the woman’s.
Kinderdine said he found a backpack, a closed laptop sitting on the ground with a cell phone plugged into it, a lighter and a pack of cigarettes.
“Inside her backpack I was looking for her wallet to see if I could find her driver’s license,” Kinderdine said. “I found her wallet, but her license wasn’t in there so I was not able to identify her. Within a minute of me being up there an OSU PD officer came up and took everything from there.”
3 p.m.:A female student fell from a floor of the Ohio Union South Garage on Monday afternoon, according to witnesses and a statement from the university. Emergency responders arrived at the scene a little before 2 p.m., and the woman was taken by ambulance to the Wexner Medical Center in critical condition, OSU spokesman Ben Johnson said in a statement.
Karina Nelson, a first-year in arts management, said she was walking by and saw the woman fall. Nelson, who called 911, said the woman didn’t appear to have fallen on accident. Johnson said in the statement that police are actively investigating the situation and foul play is not currently believed to be involved.
Erica Bruinooge, a fourth-year in social work who used to work as a nurse, was nearby when it happened and was a part of a group that attempted to administer aid. Bruinooge told The Lantern she thought, initially, that the woman could have been hit by a car.
Bruinooge said she took the woman’s pulse, but she said “she flatlined.”
Austin Capell, a fourth-year in civil engineering, said he was waiting for the CABS bus when he heard a thud. A former lifeguard, Capell said the group of bystanders who responded before emergency personnel arrived worked to remove the female’s jackets and to stabilize her neck.
“Obviously, the damage was already done, but we were trying not to break anything further,” Capell said.
Capell said the woman was lying face down and that her shoes were lying far from where she was. He said he got blood on his hand while offering assistance so he went into the Union to wash it off. When he returned, Capell said the woman was being loaded into the ambulance.