A historic Chicago church apologized Friday to the family of a woman who was killed Thursday when she was struck by crumbling pieces of a gargoyle that fell off the church steeple.
The church said it is “deeply sorry at the death,” Reuters reports. Sara Bean, 34, was walking to lunch with her fiancé Thursday when the gargoyle pieces fell on her. She was a nurse’s aide and a mother of two boys, ages 10 and 14. The fiancé, her longtime boyfriend, is the children’s father.
Second Presbyterian Church, located in the South Loop neighborhood near downtown Chicago, dates from 1873 and is one of the oldest buildings in the city. It moved quickly to put protective scaffolding around the structure, Reuters reports.
The building has no outstanding complaints but in 2011 failed an inspection due to problems that included a failure to maintain exterior walls. After repairs were made that case was dismissed. The church was made a historic landmark last year and will remain open despite the tragedy.