Update: University releases name of student fatally injured on Old Main Hill
University officials have released the name of the man who died Monday after running into a slackline on his bicycle while riding down Old Main Hill.
Eric Scott Anderson, 24, of West Jordan was a junior at USU majoring in music and a member of the school's marching band, according to university spokesman Tim Vitale.
Anderson was riding his bike westbound down the school's grassy Old Main Hill when, according to police, he ran into a slackline tensioned between two trees about half-way down the hill.
The incident prompted an outpouring of sympathy and tribute for the young student and musician. The U.S. flag was lowered to half-staff at the crest of Old Main Hill, and a bouquet of flowers was placed at the trunk of a tree near the site of the collision.
Craig Jessop, dean of USU’s Caine College of the Arts, spoke to reporters Tuesday afternoon about the school’s plans to honor the student.
“Our hearts are broken,” said Jessop. “This is devastating news and it’s a very sad day for us.”
Jessop said Anderson was a member of multiple music ensembles on campus and a promising young artist.
“He has many colleagues,” said Jessop. “He was an active member of the marching band, the jazz band, the symphonic band, the concert band; and we feel the loss of a wonderful young man with great promise.”
The Caine College scheduled a memorial service for students and faculty at the Performance Hall on the USU campus, where Anderson’s parents were expected to attend along with music professors and the marching band director.
Monday's first responders included patrolmen from the Logan Police Department and Utah Highway Patrol who initiated first aid.
“The student was treated at the scene and eventually taken to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead,” USU Police Chief Steve Mecham said.
Two slacklines had been set up at the site of the incident. Mecham said one was positioned at a lower level. A second line was mounted at approximately chest level. Mecham said the cyclist struck the higher slackline but declined to offer additional detail about where the line struck the cyclist.
The incident occurred just hours after most students were finishing classes on the first day of the fall semester.
“It is indeed a tragedy,” said Mecham “We're sad for the family; we're sad for the young man; we're sad for the students who were here slacklining. It's a just a tragic accident. We have counseling available for the students and hopefully they'll avail themselves of that opportunity.”
Slacklining is balance exercise in which participants walk across a length of nylon webbing tensioned between two anchor points.