Fordham Student Dies After Banned 'Rite of Passage'

A 22-year-old Fordham University was crtically injured as she climbed the school's bell tower early Sunday with other students to snap

A Fordham University senior died on Sunday, school officials said, after accidentally falling from the campus' landmark bell tower where she was said to have been trying to snap photos of the New York City skyline under the moonlight.

"There are no words sufficient to describe the loss of someone so young and full of promise - and mere weeks from graduation", McShane continued.

Sydney Monfries, 22, a senior at New York City's Fordham University, died Sunday as a result of the injuries she sustained when she fell inside the campus' famed Keating Hall tower. A student, named only as Dave, who met Sydney and her friends hours before the tragedy, said: "My roommate was with them". "I don't think they went up there with the intent thinking that it would be possible to fall". University officials are investigating how the students gained access to the tower. The 22-year-old and her friends reportedly climbed the tower's stairs in the Bronx, N.Y.at roughly 3 a.m. Sunday morning, and was later rushed to the hospital after getting critically injured. Emergency responders arrived to find the woman, Sydney Monfries, lying on the floor of the Keating clock tower with trauma to her head and body.

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The clock tower is supposed to be off-limits for students, but the Times reports that other students heard rumors about people finding a way inside. "Being in that building, there's no sort of methodology or way to have access to that, in my personal opinion.Don't really know how they got up there", Sean Johnson, a student said.

In a letter to students, Fordham University president Joseph M. McShane said Monfries was weeks from graduating with her bachelor's degree.

School spokesman Bob Howe told the New York Post the tower was "always locked" and that the organisation was looking into whether the lock had been tampered with.

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"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".

Her death was announced to students in an email sent by the school, which described the "unimaginable loss" suffered by Ms Monfries' family, friends and school community.

Monfries, of Portland, Ore., was set to graduate in May with a degree in journalism.

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