Plebe in serious condition after fall from window

July 09, 2000|By Laura Sullivan | Laura Sullivan,SUN STAFF

A Naval Academy freshman two weeks into his summertime "plebe training" remained in serious condition at Maryland Shock Trauma Center yesterday, a day after falling 20 feet from a first-story window in the school's dormitory, according to hospital and school officials.

The plebe, whose name the school is withholding until his parents can be notified, was flown by state police helicopter to Shock Trauma.

Academy spokesman Cmdr. Mike Brady said the student was conscious and talking after the fall, which occurred shortly before lunchtime Friday. He suffered injuries to his ankles, which were operated on Friday afternoon. He also hit his head in the fall, Brady said.

Brady said the school is investigating the circumstances of the fall, but does not suspect anyone pushed him from the window.

Brady said this appears to be the first time in many years - if ever - that someone has fallen or jumped from a window in Bancroft Hall, the school's only dorm, which houses all 4,000 midshipmen. The windows in the rooms have small, square openings that are difficult to climb through.

"Plebe summer," is the time when the newest students are indoctrinated into Navy and academy life. Their school year starts at the end of June, two months ahead of most other colleges, and their days are filled with drilling, athletics and seminars on character.

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