ASHLAND — A man who reportedly jumped from the fourth floor of the Ashland Springs Hotel Wednesday afternoon survived the landing.
The man, whom police did not identify, was taken to Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center and transferred to Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, where he was undergoing a procedure today, officials said.
Witnesses said he was alone when he jumped.
“I think it’s always sad when someone is so unhappy they’re trying to fix their situation this way,” said Ashland Springs General Manager Don Anway. “We’ve talked to our employees, and we have resources and counseling available.”
Employee Zach Curtis said he witnessed the immediate aftermath.
“I feel a certain amount of disbelief and a certain amount of compassion," Curtis said. “I thought he was hit by a car but he apparently sat on the edge of the hotel there on the fourth floor and pushed himself off with his feet.”
The man, according to witnesses and hotel staff, wasn't carrying any possessions when he jumped, but he left some shoes and an odd assortment of personal items on the sidewalk in front of the hotel beforehand, according to Anway.
“We saw this kid fall,” said Joshua Short, 22, of Ashland, who was passing by when it happened. “When I went over to him he was breathing. From what I saw, that kid should be dead. We didn’t know him, but he had torn shoes and wore clothes like us.”
Short, who is homeless, said he has been fighting tears since it happened. “Everyone has a heart," he said. "Someone goes and does that, it makes me feel you need to be there for someone. If someone is sad like that, you just need to be there.”
Anway said the fourth floor is locked and secured. The man would have had to climb over barriers to get up there.
“He had to go to great efforts," Anway said. "It’s secured.”
According to Ashland Daily Tidings archives, in 2014, two Ashland police officers received life-saving awards for their efforts in stopping a man who was attempting to kill himself by jumping off the Ashland Springs Hotel.
The hotel, which opened in 1925, has nine floors and is 118 feet high. The fall from the fourth floor would have been roughly 40 feet high.
— Email Ashland freelance writer Julie Akins at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/@julieakins.