SPRINGFIELD – Friends and family gathered at a Springfield hospital following a fall by a Mahomet man from a cellphone tower near Springfield.
Bret Beherns was listed this morning in critical condition at Memorial Medical Center in Springfield.
According to Rochester Fire Chief Dick Rentschler, a rescue crew was dispatched at 5:24 p.m. Tuesday to 228 E. Main St. in Rochester on a report of a man who had fallen 55 feet from a cellular phone tower.
"It was estimated he fell from 55 feet up to 70 feet," Rentschler said. "He had a pretty traumatic fall."
Rochester Police Chief William Marass said a preliminary investigation indicates Beherns was installing something on the tower when he fell, but no further information was available.
He said the Occupational Safety and Health Administration was contacted and will investigate the incident to try to determine what happened.
Rentschler said the cellphone tower was formerly operated by MCI, but had been inactive. The Mahomet man was taken to Memorial Medical Center by ambulance, Rentschler said. Rochester is about 5 miles east of Springfield.
Beherns, a 2005 graduate of Mahomet-Seymour High School, played football and baseball there. He had just finished his first year of study at Parkland College and had worked as a sports correspondent for The News-Gazette.