A 29-year-old New Jersey woman suffered a fatal fall off an escalator inside the renowned World Trade Center Oculus in New York, police said.
Jenny Santos, of Kearny, and her twin were on their way home when she tried retrieving her sister’s hat, which fell off while they were riding the escalator about 5:30 a.m. Saturday, CBS New York reported.
Santos fell off the escalator, plunging about 30 feet before landing on the main concourse’s marble floor, officials said.
Emergency responders rushed Santos to Bellevue Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, Port Authority police spokesman Joseph Pentangelo told InsideEdition.com.
Loved ones were stunned by the sudden loss of Santos, who was remembered as a vibrant young woman who coached at the Bergen County Rowing Academy.
“It’s just hard to even believe this,” Clemens Reinke, who coached alongside Santos, told CBS New York. “Just yesterday she was with us, Jenny was coaching our team.”
Santos graduated from William Paterson University and worked as a teacher.
An avid traveler, she had visited countries including the Czech Republic, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Canada.
“I really try and experience as much outdoor adventure as possible especially during the spring and summer seasons,” she wrote on her CouchSurfing.com profile. “Just trying to live life the best way possible.”
She noted her love of the Eiffel Tower and of skydiving, writing, “Never felt a feeling of being alive and badass at the same time!”
As news of her passing spread, tributes to the young woman poured in on social media.
“You were such a humble and amazing person taken way too soon! My prayers are with your mother and sisters during this difficult time,” a friend wrote on Facebook.
“Very sad to hear the passing of one of the kindest, most beautiful people I have had the honor of meeting,” another person posted.
Police are investigating the incident.
The Oculus, a striking transportation hub that cost $3.9 billion to complete and was designed by architect Santiago Calatrava, provides connections between 11 subway lines and New Jersey’s PATH trains.