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Fordham University student dead in bell tower fall

17 April 2019

The journalism student and her friends had just had dinner at a barbecue restaurant and chose to climb the tower as a "rite of passage" before graduating next month, according to staff there.

"I know you join me in keeping Sydney, and her family and loved ones, in your thoughts and prayers", Father McShane also said, reported the New York Times.

A 22-year-old college senior fell to her death in NY while climbing the stairs of an off-limits campus clock tower in the early hours of Sunday, authorities said. "Ms. Monfries had posted a video from the top of the tower on Snapchat with the caption "Bell tower" early Sunday, according to video shared with The New York Times". She was rushed to St. Barnabas Hospital, where she passed away on Sunday evening. "As the clock tower is a rather unsafe, and therefore secured, area of campus, students would likely face disciplinary action if they entered it".

Keating Hall was locked before the students gained entry to the tower, Fordham's Senior Director of Communications Gina Vergel told The Daily Caller News Foundation. "But right now they're just trying to process this tremendous loss" while being "very appreciate of all the family and friends who've come around to support them", the friend said. "Pease don't hesitate to use them: no matter how you reach out, I promise you someone will be there to listen", he wrote. "They are always doing some kind of cleaning or renovation", she said. But there is no bell in the tower, the school said.

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Her uncle Gregory Monfries, said: "This is not a good time".

"She couldn't breathe. She hit her head".

In 2013, a school official told the Fordham Ram that the tower was "rather dangerous" and therefore "off limits" to students.

Fordham University confirmed the incident and sent a letter to students.

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The University will issue a more complete statement as soon as possible.

"Fordham will confer a bachelor's degree upon Sydney posthumously, which we will present to her parents at the appropriate time", McShane said.

A Portland, Oregon, native, Monfries was studying journalism at Fordham and was expected to graduate in May.

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Fordham University student dead in bell tower fall