Student seriously injured after falling from bell tower at Fordham University

Sydney Paige Monfries

The Fordham University coed who plummeted 40 feet from the campus's landmark clock tower Sunday morning has died, according to school officials.

School President Joseph McShane says 22-year-old Sydney Monfries, a senior at Fordham College at Rose Hill, died on Sunday after sustaining a fall inside the Keating Clock tower.

Sydney and her friends had climbed the tower to take photographs for social media, according to their friends.

She was safely returned to the ground after being lifted out of one of the tower's windows and rushed to St. Barnabas Hospital, where she was placed on life support in an "extremely critical" condition.

Monfries was a senior and had been studying journalism, according to the Times. "I think they were posting on Instagram when it happened".

Friends previously said she was eager to get a good picture of the city skyline to post on her Instagram page.

Other students described climbing the bell tower as a unsafe rite of passage.

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According to United States media reports, Ms Monfries slipped on her way up the tower's spiral staircase and was found by emergency services at about 3.17am.

A student who was injured when she fell from the Fordham University bell tower has died. It was reported that Sydney may have been participating in a "rite of passage" ceremony or event.

One student, identified only as Anne, told the United States publication she believed Ms Monfries had climbed the tower with several other students when the tragedy occurred. That's part of the allure for some students, The Observer reported.

"You have to ride the ram", she said of a statue on campus, adding that students also "have to go into the tunnels underground and you have to go into the bell tower".

"It's like a tradition, apparently, for seniors to sneak into the tower and climb up. And they were like trying to get good views of the city", student Antonia Greene said.

And despite the tower being off-limits to students, that hasn't stopped them from climbing it.

'Recently people heard the door was open or found a passageway. "They usually go late at night at around 1 or 2 a.m.to drink and see the view". She posted a video from the top on Snapchat early Sunday, the newspaper reports.

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