ATLANTA – A man has died after falling more than 60 feet from an upper deck at Turner Field during a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies Monday night.
Connie Homer of Conyers, Ga., tells The Associated Press her only son, 30-year-old Ronald Lee Homer Jr., told her in a cellphone call from the Monday night game that rain was starting to let up and he was preparing to go back in the stadium. She says he ended the call in his typical way, telling his mother he loved her.
She said her son was a life-long Braves fan and did landscape work outside Atlanta.
MyFoxAtlanta.com, citing Atlanta police, reported that Homer was pronounced dead at Atlanta Medical Center, where he had been taken from the ballpark.
Witnesses told the station that Homer had fallen from the outside of the 400 level of the stadium. Atlanta police spokesman John Chafee told the Associated Press that he landed in a parking lot. Chafee said witnesses described the fall as accidental, and added that he was not sure whether wet conditions or alcohol contributed to the fall. Heavy rains had led to a nearly two-hour delay of the game, which was scheduled to start at 7:10 p.m.
Monday's accident wasn't the first of its kind to happen at Turner Field, and marked at least the third time a sports fan has fallen from the stands in Atlanta in about a year.
Isaac Grubb, 20, of Lenoir City, Tenn. died after falling over a railing at the Georgia Dome during a football game between Tennessee and North Carolina State on Aug. 31, 2012. Authorities said he landed on another man seated in the lower level, and that alcohol was a factor.
A man fell about 25 feet over a staircase railing at a Georgia Tech-Miami football game on Sept. 22, 2012 and was not seriously injured.
In May 2008, a 25-year-old Cumming, Ga. man suffered head injuries when he fell down a stairwell at Turner Field during a game against the New York Mets and later died. Police found that alcohol had factored into that accident, which the Braves said was the first non-medical fatality to happen at the ballpark.
Turner Field became the home of the Braves in 1997, a year after serving as the site of major events for the 1996 Summer Olympics.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.