August 13, 2013

Man killed in stadium fall was lifelong Braves fan

By JEFF MARTIN and PHILLIP LUCAS, Associated Press

ATLANTA — The mother of a Georgia man who died after falling from the upper deck of Turner Field in Atlanta says her son was a lifelong Braves fan who followed the team through losing seasons as well as winning ones.

Ronald Lee Homer Jr., fell about 65 feet at Monday night’s game between the Atlanta Braves and Philadelphia Phillies, which had been delayed for nearly two hours by heavy rain, authorities said.

Homer, 30, spoke with his mother Connie Homer by cellphone as he and other fans waited for the rain to let up. In that conversation, he said the rain was beginning to slack off and indicated he was preparing to go into the seating area for the game.

“He said ‘I love you mom, and I said ‘I love you too’ and that was it,” his mother said in an interview with The Associated Press on Tuesday morning.

“He was big hearted, just a great guy, very respectful,” she said. “It didn’t matter if they were winning, losing or what — he’s been a Braves fan forever.”

Homer, who grew up in Conyers, Ga., graduated in 2001 from Rockdale High School, where he was involved in student government.

He was 6 feet, 6-inches tall and did landscape work for a living, his mother said. He was her only son and leaves behind one sister.

There’s no indication of foul play, and the fall appears to have been an accident, Atlanta police spokesman John Chafee said.

Connie Homer said she’s heard nothing from authorities as to what might have caused her son to fall. An autopsy was planned for Tuesday, the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office said.

An Atlanta Braves spokeswoman declined comment Monday night, referring calls to the Atlanta police.