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Texas Rangers fan glad to be alive after 30-foot fall

By the CNN Wire Staff
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Fan fell 30 feet trying to catch ball
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Tyler Morris, a firefighter, was trying to catch a foul ball
  • Morris: "Somebody had to have been watching over me from above"
  • He suffered a skull fracture and injuries to his foot and ankle
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(CNN) -- A fan who fell from the second deck of the Texas Rangers ballpark while trying to catch a foul ball said he feels lucky to be alive.

"Somebody had to have been watching over me from above," Tyler Morris told reporters as he left a Fort Worth hospital Thursday.

Morris, a firefighter for the Lake Cities Fire Department in Corinth, Texas, suffered a skull fracture and injuries to his

foot and ankle when he fell almost 30 feet Tuesday.

"I've ran on things where people fall great distances and don't survive," he said. "I'm very fortunate."

Morris said he has some recollection of what happened.

"I leaned up over the railing trying to get the ball," he said. "I went backwards over the railing and started to fall. The ball came back to me and I got it. But I let it go when I tried to grab the railing. But I didn't get a good grip on it."

Morris said he hit the electronic message board, but doesn't remember anything after that.

Texas Rangers President Nolan Ryan called the incident unfortunate.

"It's pretty hard to guard against something of that nature," Ryan said at a Wednesday news conference.

Some guard railings in the stadium were raised after a 1994 incident in which a woman suffered multiple injuries after falling 35 feet from the upper deck while posing for a picture, according to a report published in The Star Telegram on April 15, 1994.

Ryan said safety policies in the stadium were reviewed after Tuesday's incident, and that the second-deck railings measure more than 30 inches high, above the standardized code of 26 inches.

He visited with Morris at John Peter Smith Hospital on Wednesday, and said he and other members of the organization brought Morris several autographed items, including the ball he was trying to catch when he fell.

"He was as thrilled to get that as anything else we brought him," Ryan said.

Morris said the Rangers organization has offered to let him come back to any game he wants when he is ready to return. "They've been great," he said. "I'm not mad at anybody. This was a total accident."

CNN's Janet DiGiacomo contributed to this report