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San Francisco State University student falls during Marin headlands retreat



Ellen Griffin
SFSU Office of Public Affairs & Publications
(415) 338-6990
(415) 338-1665


Press Release published by the Office of Public Affairs & Publications


Airlifted to Stanford Medical Center for emergency treatment

SAN FRANCISCO, August 28, 2004 -- San Francisco State University student Kevin William Costello lost his footing while hiking at the Headlands Institute in Marin County at approximately 4:30 p.m. yesterday and fell 40-50 feet into the ocean.

National Park Service units, the U.S. Coast Guard and South Marin Fire assisted with the rescue. Costello was hoisted to a USCG helicopter and flown to Stanford Medical Center, where hospital officials say he is in critical condition at this time.

Costello was attending a retreat for incoming freshmen in the University’s Presidential Scholars Program. The 23 students and a faculty member were participating in team-building experiences that included a hike to the ocean. Costello and another student became separated from the group.

According to the National Park Service: "...the two students headed up a steep slope trying to access Bird Rock from Rodeo Beach. The two realized they were in a bad situation and tried to find an alternative route down and back to the beach. One of the two students headed down on another path, lost his footing and fell into the ocean. The injured person sustained what appeared to be trauma to his head and lower leg."

Costello is a 17-year-old first-year student from Watsonville, Calif. His family has been notified and is with him at the hospital.

The retreat is scheduled to end today. University staff are with the remaining students and counseling will be offered to those who want it.

President Robert A. Corrigan stated: "This is a tragic accident. Our thoughts are with Kevin's family as we hope and pray for his condition to improve."

The Presidential Scholars program is the University's most distinguished academic award for first-time freshmen. Scholars receive support for tuition fees, housing and textbooks, and priority course registration. They take two general education courses together as a freshman cohort and attend special seminars and cultural events to develop academic skills and expand their intellectual experiences.


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Last modified August 30, 2004, by the Office of Public Affairs & Publications