The assistant Features editor died unexpectedly yesterday when she fell through a weak floorboard on the fourth floor of Brooks Residence Hall. She was 20.
When Molly Duerig stepped into the back corner of the community kitchenette to help her RA move an fridge out of the room, the ancient floor fell away beneath her. She fell into a dark tunnel, which sources say may have been part of the Underground Railroad or a laundry chute, before landing in a crumbled heap in the basement four floors below.
“One minute she was there, the next…she wasn’t,” said RA Marcie Steinmetz, ’12. “I didn’t understand how it could have happened. In fact, I still can’t.”
Duerig was originally from Pittsburgh and enjoyed swimming, skiing and biking.
The College is investigating Brooks’ structural stability as of today. Residents will be informed of any updates. Until then, Brooks residents (particularly those on the fourth floor) are advised to tread the hallways with extreme caution.
Molly had always complained about the four flights of stairs she had to climb every day, claiming they would be the death of her.
Molly is survived by her mother, Lynn Duerig; her father, Paul Duerig; her brother, Andrew, 15; and her sister, Katie, 8; and her half-blind cat, Simon.
Services will be held this Sunday, April 3 at Ford Chapel.