A 27-year-old Howard County firefighter and paramedic died early yesterday after she fell off the roof of the Baltimore Museum of Industry on Key Highway, authorities said.
Mary Elizabeth Rollins, who lived in the HarborView condominium complex in Federal Hill, was on the museum roof with a friend who worked as the museum's receptionist, said Roland H. Woodward, the museum director.
FOR THE RECORD - Because of incorrect information supplied by the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services, an article in yesterday's Maryland section incorrectly reported where Mary Elizabeth Rollins grew up. Rollins, who died Thursday after falling off the roof of the Baltimore Museum of Industry, grew up in the Forest Hill area of Harford County.
The Sun regrets the error.
They got onto the roof from a staircase on the building's exterior and were trying to climb onto the museum's adjacent neon sign overlooking the water, Woodward said.
About 2:30 a.m., Rollins fell about 65 feet, said Officer Nicole Monroe, a city police spokeswoman.
She was taken to Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where she was pronounced dead at 6:39 a.m., Monroe said.
"We have not ruled out the possibility that alcohol may have been a contributing factor," Monroe said.
Rollins, a four-year veteran of the department, worked at the Ellicott City No. 2 fire station, said Bill Mould, a spokesman for the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services. She was known as Mary Beth, Mould said.
"Everyone who knew her and worked with her, to the letter, described her as a stellar employee," Mould said.
An only child, Rollins grew up in the King George area of Virginia and came to the Baltimore area to study at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She graduated and was enrolled in a nursing program at Catonsville Community College at the time of her death, Mould said.
Rollins enjoyed competing in triathlons and playing softball, Mould said.
"She was just an all-around great person," he said.
Fire and emergency employees across Howard County were grieving yesterday, and several asked for the day off to seek counseling, Mould said. When Baltimore Museum of Industry staff members opened the building at 7:30 yesterday morning, they learned of the incident through a phone message left by the receptionist, Woodward said.
Museum employees did not know Rollins but were saddened at the news, Woodward said.
"We're really devastated," he said. "There was simply no reason for them to be there."