A student at the University of Georgia was seriously hurt Tuesday evening when she became caught in a severe storm while walking across campus and a tree fell on her.
Mia Corte, 20, of Chattanooga, Tennessee, was taken to Piedmont Athens Regional Medical Center with multiple injuries sustained from the falling tree, according to a UGA police report. Corte was treated in the intensive care unit and faces “a long road of recovery,” her mother, Rebecca Corte, said on Facebook.
“She’s one tough cookie surrounded by faith, love and determination,” her mother wrote in the public post. “Thank you in advance for the prayers!”
UGA spokesman Greg Trevor said the tree fell as the result of a sudden and intense thunderstorm with winds that reached 64 mph.
“As they routinely do for students with medical emergencies, our Student Care and Outreach team has been offering support to Ms. Corte and her family in recent days,” Trevor said, adding that UGA’s President Jere Morehead and Dean of Students Eric Atkinson had visited her in the hospital.
According to the police report, a UGA police officer went to check on reports of a fallen tree on East Campus at Field Street just after 5:15 p.m. Tuesday. When he arrived, he was flagged down by “several frantic individuals” who told him there was a girl underneath the large, uprooted tree.
The officer and several bystanders worked to hold the weight of the tree while another student, who was also an off-duty EMT, tried to assess Corte’s condition and instructed the officer and arriving firefighters on what to do, the report said. The officer said Corte lost consciousness multiple times as he held her head steady.
Within the first 10 minutes, they were joined by more first responders, the report said. The officers and others at the scene continued to lift the tree as EMS workers moved Corte onto a spine board and into an ambulance. Police later checked on Corte at the hospital.
An update on her condition was not provided Friday.
“Our thoughts are with Mia Wei Corte and her family, and we wish her a speedy recovery,” Trevor said.
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