Surviving a fall from the Empire State Building

Two people have jumped from the observation deck of the Empire State Building, intending to commit suicide, and survived.

The first was Thomas Helms, a 27-year-old artist from Hawaii. He jumped on Dec 22, 1977, but the winds blew him onto a ledge 15-feet below. After lying stunned for a while, he managed to crawl back inside through a window.

The second survivor was Elvita Adams of New York City. She jumped on Dec 2, 1979, but again the wind blew her back toward the building, depositing her on a balcony on the 85th floor. A security guard noticed her there and pulled her back inside.

For whatever reason, the case of Elvita Adams attracted more attention. It inspired an off-Broadway one-man show, "I've Been Elvita Adams," which didn't get good reviews.

Based on these two cases, windy days in December would seem to be the best days for surviving a jump from the Empire State Building.

Bridgewater Courier-News - Dec 23, 1977

Provo Daily Herald - Dec 3, 1979

     Posted By: Alex - Tue Feb 01, 2022
     Category: Death | Suicide | 1970s

"You're a real jerk when you drink, you know that, Superman?"
Posted by Marco McClean on 02/01/22 at 11:25 PM
If this happened to me I’d have one of two thoughts: either “God must want me to live for a reason” or “I’m such an idiot I can’t even kill myself right!”
Posted by Brian on 02/02/22 at 11:47 AM
"For whatever reason"... sexism. Pure sexism. Male suicide doesn't matter. (Yes, I am bitter about this, and have good reason to be.)
Posted by Richard Bos on 02/03/22 at 12:44 PM
I hope they secured this observation deck better; I'd hate to see a fad of people jumping from the Empire State building in December hoping to be gently blown onto a window ledge, only to fall to their death instead.
Posted by Yudith on 02/04/22 at 07:41 PM
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