Commotion struck the Mount Union community this week as a wild animal broke its way into the McPherson Athletic and Academic Complex on Tuesday May 7. Students, faculty and staff all worked together to safely and humanely remove the unexpected guest from the building.
Shattering a window in the hallway between the gymnasium lobby and the computer lab, the lone deer injured itself during the incident, leaving trails of blood around the MAAC. According to one physical plant employee, the doe ran around the building before becoming trapped at the bottom of a stairwell for 20 minutes. At that point, a crowd began forming in the area, taking pictures and documenting one of the more bizarre moments of the school year.
Taylor Breyley, a sophomore Marketing and Management major, said that she saw the deer running through the middle of campus prior to the animal’s escapade in the MAAC. It ran through the quad, in front of HPCC, and then around the chapel before darting toward the MAAC.
Trey Pamer, a senior Sport Business major, told a reporter for the Dynamo that when he entered the building he wasn’t aware of what was going on, but saw a crowd of people and knew something was going down. It wasn’t until he walked into the building that he saw the blood. He then learned that a deer had found its way into the complex.
“It was trapped at the bottom of the stairs and everyone was trying to be really calm and give it space,” Pamer said “It was bleeding and scared.”
Morgan Riley, a junior Criminal Justice Major, was in the athletic training office inside the MAAC when she said a handful of the student trainers ran into the hallway, and started staring. When Riley asked what was going on, one the trainers said “Oh my God, deer! There’s a deer!”. When she ran into the hallway to join them, she saw the deer running around by the trophy cases and concessions stand in front of the Main Gym. Campus security and a bystander were trying to detain the deer before it managed to escape and run down the stairwell, where it then became trapped.
“There was blood all over the floor,” Riley recalled “When I got up close to see it [the deer] ran by really fast.”
“She (the deer) was scared, and everyone did a really good job of staying calm and quiet so as not to spook the poor thing.” one Physical Plant employee said. “We used mats to block off the rest of the building, leaving only one path to the exit so that she could get out of the building. Everyone was ready in case the deer slammed up against a barricade, but she just ran out of the building as soon as she got the chance.”
The university acted quickly to clean up the facility and replace the window within an hour of the incident. Physical Plant employees were on the scene and working hard, and were instrumental in coming up with and enacting a humane and safe plan to remove the frightened deer.