Students at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla., were horrified to see a bald eagle released into the school’s chapel by a professional handler crash into a window and tumble to the floor just as students began chanting “USA! USA!”
The eagle survived the impact, but not before startling onlookers whose gasps and screams as the bird collapsed are audible in a video of the incident.
“It was a bit shocking to see, but we’re thankful the eagle is OK,” university spokeswoman Carissa Bratschun told TulsaWorld.com.
The eagle was supposed to fly straight to the trainer but became disoriented and circled the auditorium instead.
“It had practiced five or six times,” Miss Bratschun said. “When the time came, we’re not sure what happened. It flew around the room and then hit a window.”
The bald eagle and a golden eagle were part of a special spirit day chapel service held last week to launch the school year at the university, TulsaWorld.com reported.