It sounds like a scene from an action movie, but a Rhode Island father credits his son's survival from a four-story fall to his fast thinking and fast footwork.
College cheerleader Dylan Smith was on the fourth floor of a building last Thursday teaching a group of gymnastic students how to tumble when he “kinda lost his balance” at the end of the routine, his father, Hugh Smith, told the Lexington Herald-Leader.
The nineteen-year-old student landed against a door and the door gave way, sending Smith on a free-fall through the air.
Smith, apparently quick on his toes, brought his knees to his chest, did a series of flips, and landed on his feet in the parking lot below.
He didn't walk away from the 44-story fall unscathed, of course. Smith told responders he didn't remember striking the ground, but he was conscious and alert during the entire ride to the hospital, according to local paper The Call.
The University of Kentucky sophomore fractured his pelvis, dislocated his hip, ruptured his spleen and punctured his lungs. But he's alive, and his family is overjoyed and grateful.
“He's alive and it's basically a miracle,” Smith's father told The Call. “He should be dead. It's a 44-foot drop.”
Smith's employer, Superior Cheer All Stars, posted a photo of him on their website captioned “Our Miracle on Main Street” with a message saying “You are in all our thoughts and prayers.”
His father told The Call that his students, mostly preteen girls, were shaken-up by the accident.
Smith, a pre-med major, expects to make a full recovery and rejoin the squad when his studies resume in September.