Adrienne Ryba: Student, 19, dies after plunging through roof of abandoned building
A 19-year-old student has plunged 50 ft to her death after falling through the roof of a decaying, abandoned warehouse where she and her boyfriend had gone to view the city's lights.
Adrienne Ryba was scaling the roof of a former manufacturing plant in Akron, Ohio with her boyfriend and another pair of friends just after midnight on Saturday when the section she was on gave way.
Her friends frantically called 911 and first responders forced their way into the building, but Ryba was pronounced dead at the scene after multiple blunt force traumas from the fall.
Lt. Rick Edwards from Akron police said it appeared that the group had been drinking alcohol.
'They wanted to see the lights of the city and the meteor shower,' Ryba's mother, Jennifer, told the Akron Beacon Journal. 'Teenagers do crazy things like that. You think you’re invincible when you’re a teenager.'
Ryba's boyfriend, 20-year-old student Collin Butler, was arrested at the warehouse after allegedly shouting and cursing at paramedics, and for refusing to answer police questions about the tragedy.
'We made several attempts to question C. Butler on how he got in so we could enter the same way, but we got no cooperation,' the police report noted.
He was charged with misconduct at an emergency and obstructing official business. He was released after posting his own bond several hours later.
Missed: Ryba's mother Jennifer, right, said the teen had gone to look at the city's lights from the roof
Scene: The former manufacturing plant in Akron was locked but they accessed the roof by walking along a concrete walkway which led to a fire escape, which in turn led to the roof
Ryba's mother said Butler, who had met his girlfriend as they both attended Medina County's Highland High School, was 'so upset'.
'It happened fast and he couldn’t catch her,' Jennifer Ryba said. 'They said they had to hold him back or he would have gone in after her.'
Jason Grom, a forensic investigator for the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office, told the Medina-Gazette that the building had been locked when the youngsters entered on Saturday.
Instead, they crossed a crumbling concrete walkway and reached a fire escape, which led to the roof.
As they walked across the roof, the part where Ryba was standing gave way and she plunged between 40 and 50 feet, he added.
'They were exploring,' Akron police Lt. Rick Edwards told the Journal. 'This is the first time I've ever heard of [people doing this].'
Ryba was in her sophomore year studying interior design at Kent State University. She graduated from Highland High School in 2011 with honors and played on the school's varsity volleyball team.
Tragic: Ryba, left, was walking on the roof with her boyfriend and two friends when a section gave way
Accident: Police believe Ryba, right, fell 50 ft from the roof. She was pronounced dead at the scene
The manufacturing plant once housed the Atlantic Foundry, which made iron castings for local rubber, steel, automotive and mining industries. It closed in 1989.
Now the plant is littered with broken windows, weeds, graffiti and rusting machinery.
Adrienne Ryba, who hoped to set up her own interior design studio one day, is survived by her parents, Jennifer and Steve, and older sister Alyssa.
'She was vibrant, artistic, very creative, and loved playing volleyball,' her obituary reads.
'Adrienne was a wonderful, loving daughter and sister. She loved and valued her many friendships and was always there to help.'
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