A Tragic Death During the OSU Graduation Left Students and Families Unsettled

College graduation is supposed to be a happy day. But for many, the OSU 2024 graduation was one of the darkest days.

Jamie Lerner - Author

May 7 2024, Published 4:17 p.m. ET

The weather is beautiful, college seniors are hungover from partying, and families are coming together to celebrate graduation. But when someone jumped or fell from the stands, the day took an incredibly dark turn as onlookers noticed police presence upon exiting the stadium. Ohio State University is one of the biggest schools in America with a major sports presence and following. Now, however, they’re in the headlines for a different reason.

Article continues below advertisement

According to news reports, an unnamed person fell from the stands just before the graduation ceremony began on May 5, 2024. The ceremony was not stopped and the news was not shared with students, faculty, and the wider community until later. But what really happened? We spoke with a current OSU student about their experience amidst the chaos.

Article continues below advertisement

A woman allegedly fell from the stands on purpose just before the OSU graduation ceremony.

While news sources have shared varied information about the incident at OSU, they all note that someone either fell or jumped from the stands to ground level, immediately dying on impact. Between a series of pro-Palestinian protests and several tornadoes, the 2023-2024 school year at OSU has been riddled with challenges, and we’re sure many seniors were excited to graduate on a high note.

While the identity of the deceased hadn’t been identified previously, news broke on May 7 that the person in question was a 53-year-old woman named Larissa Brady. “The coroner’s office confirmed that Larissa Brady, 53, fell from the stands of the Ohio State football stadium near the Bell Tower and died at 12:25 p.m.,” NBC4 reported. “An Ohio State spokesperson said that Brady was a family member of one of the graduates.”

Article continues below advertisement

However, the incident wasn’t addressed at the graduation ceremony. A current OSU student close to the Distractify staff shared that they found out about it through a large group chat amongst friends on Sunday afternoon around 1:30 p.m. “OSU seems to have handled it well,” they shared. “I was not there, but they sent us emails providing resources to cope with what happened and still were able to run a successful commencement ceremony.”

Article continues below advertisement
Ohio State Email Response
Source: Courtesy of Ohio State Student

Before the identity was revealed, many speculated that a student had taken their own life. It has since been reported that “the fall was not accidental,” according to Columbus police. However, the official cause of death and coroner’s report have not yet been released.

Article continues below advertisement

While many TikTokers and media sites have speculated about what really happened, there were several witnesses to the scene that the police are likely speaking with. Our source shared that while the greater student body didn’t know much beyond what articles were saying, “We do know that the person fell in front of students entering the stadium.”

After the fact, several people noticed police tape, campus police, and first responders at the scene. Although Brady was not a current OSU student, her death is an important reminder to take care of our mental health and lean on resources, friends, and family during difficult situations.

If you or someone you know are experiencing suicidal thoughts, call, text, or message the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. Dial or text 988, call 1-800-273-8255, or chat via their website.

More from Distractify

Latest Human Interest News and Updates

    Opt-out of personalized ads

    © Copyright 2024 Distractify. Distractify is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.