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Turner Field Fall From Upper Deck Kills Man Before Braves Game

Image: Turner Field Fall From Upper Deck Kills Man Before Braves Game

By Clyde Hughes   |   Tuesday, 13 Aug 2013 09:54 AM

A 29-year-old man was killed at Atlanta's Turner Field Monday night when he fell from the upper deck of the baseball stadium onto an outside parking lot.

Authorities told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Ronald Homer, 29, of Conyers, Ga., fell 65 feet around 9 p.m. The start of Monday night’s game between the Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies was delayed due to rain.

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The game started just before Homer fell. Authorities are still trying to determine how the fall happened exactly, but they do not suspect there was foul play.

"The fall appears accidental,” Officer John Chafee with Atlanta police said in an emailed statement to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

It was the second time in three years that a fan fell to their death during a Major League baseball game. Shannon Stone, 39, a Brownwood, Texas firefighter, died after falling from the outfield stands while reaching for a ball thrown by former Texas Rangers outfield Josh Hamilton, according to ESPN.com.

Stone fell 20 feet, in front of his six-year-old son. Stone slammed into concrete, tumbling into a gap between the left-field railing and the left field wall.

Homer's death is thought to be the second fatal fall at the stadium and the third at a major sports facility in the city.

Justin Hayes, 25, died after falling 150 feet inside Turner Field from the upper deck concourse to the field level concourse behind home plate in May, 2008. Police found that alcohol had factored into that accident, which the Braves had said at that time was the first non-medical fatality to happen at the ballpark, according to the Associated Press.

On Aug. 31, 2012, Isaac Grubb, 20, fell during the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game between Tennessee and North Carolina State at the Georgia Dome. Grubb, whose fall was ruled an accident, suffered head trauma and died after being transported to the hospital.

Turner Field became the home of the Braves in 1997 after extensive remodeling, following the 1996 Summer Olympics, where it held the opening and closing ceremonies along with the track and field competition.

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