The teenager’s father has said he hoped he was not a “statistic” and said he was devastated by the death of his 15-year-old son who fell to his death off a rock in an Oregon park on Friday.
“I hope that my son was not the statistic, and I hope that the coroner’s office does not say that I have to do something else with my life,” said David Rozewski, who lives in Washington state.
His son died on Saturday, and authorities said the teen had suffered from epilepsy since age 15.
“He was just a normal, normal teenager,” Rozewksi said.
The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department said the 15-day-old boy, identified by the agency as Jaden, fell off a granite boulder in the Cascade Mountains National Recreation Area near Bend on Friday evening.
He was carrying a backpack, according to state park service officials.
According to a news release, the boy fell about 2,200 feet and landed on a large rock, where he hit his head.
He died at the scene, the release said.
The boy’s family said he had epilepsy and was taking medication.
The teen’s parents, who did not want to be identified, declined to comment.
The boy’s parents told police the boy’s epilepsy was not believed to be the cause of his death, but they did not give details.
State police said the investigation into the death is ongoing.
“We do have an open homicide investigation and are looking into whether there were any other injuries,” a police news release said, but did not elaborate.
Authorities said the boy was not wearing a helmet at the time of his fall.
He also had an ear piece strapped to his head to protect him from falling rocks.
“It’s just devastating,” said Rozewski, who said he has no criminal record.
“I hope it’s not because I’m a statistic, because that’s just not true.
I hope I was not one of them.”