Young Yukon athlete falls four storeys

UPDATED VERSION Ten minutes after arriving at Edmonton's Radisson Hotel on Thursday, 15-year-old Brendan Matheson fell from a fourth-floor balcony onto the paved parking lot below.

UPDATED VERSION

Ten minutes after arriving at Edmonton’s Radisson Hotel on Thursday, 15-year-old Brendan Matheson fell from a fourth-floor balcony onto the paved parking lot below.

He remains in hospital, in stable but critical condition.

He was a member of the Yukon’s Western Summer Games Men’s Basketball team and was in Edmonton for a tournament.

The team checked in to the south Edmonton hotel at about 4 p.m., said the Radisson’s general manager Robin Cumine.

At about 4:10 p.m., the front desk received an emergency call, he said.

Arriving at the cement parking lot, a security team found Matheson trying to stand, said Cumine.

Following instructions from emergency services on the telephone, security – who were now joined by the team’s coaches – told Matheson to lie still and stop trying to move, said Cumine.

Matheson was trying to climb from one balcony to another when he slipped and fell, said Edmonton Police Services.

Matheson went right into surgery when he arrived at the University of Alberta hospital, said Cumine, relaying information he’d received from coaches.

After surgery, he was put on a ventilator. On Monday, Matheson began breathing on his own again.

“Apparently, he also said a few words,” said Cumine, who heard from coaches that Matheson said “Mom” for the first time Tuesday.

University of Alberta Hospital won’t release information about Matheson’s injuries, citing patient confidentiality.

Matheson’s parents are with him in Edmonton and could not be reached for comment.

In Whitehorse, the community instantly rallied together to support the young athlete.

A prayer vigil was put in place July 1 at the Whitehorse United Church on Main Street.

“Everybody does what they can and this is what we can do,” said Rev. Beverly Brazier. “We don’t know the family. Two of the coaches are from here and some of our young people go to school with him. We asked permission of the family, if it would be alright with them, so we thought the one thing we could do would be to open this space as a gathering for community, so that’s what we’ve been doing, just having it available for people.”

Inside the church doors, a table is set up with a banner and book for people to write their prayers and well wishes.

Further inside, people can light a candle and have a quiet space to pray, said Braizer.

Contact Roxanne Stasyszyn at

roxannes@yukon-news.com