What started off as a patriotic chant of “USA! USA!” during a special service at a Christian university, turned into screams of horror when a bald eagle making its way around the chapel in the performance seemed to be trying to fly to freedom — and smacked right into a deceiving window instead.
The incident happened last week at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
Although “shocking to see,” university spokeswoman Carissa Bratschun told Tulsa World the eagle was not injured.
The event was part of a spirit day for Oral Roberts students and also featured a golden eagle, the university’s mascot.
Bratschun said the flight was rehearsed beforehand with the eagle flying straight to the trainer.
“When the time came, we’re not sure what happened. It flew around the room and then hit a window,” she said.
Watch this video footage of the incident:
The videographer shared these thoughts about the experience with ABC News:
“They’d practiced it many times, but the eagle just got disoriented,” Lucas Cherry, a first-year MBA student at Oral Roberts told ABCNews.com. “The eagle was perfectly fine.”
Cherry, 22, posted a video of the incident on YouTube where it received a stream of comments, many of them criticizing the use of the eagle at such an event, something Cherry contests.
“This particular eagle had fallen out of its nest and had an injured foot and had been rehabilitated,” Cherry said. “The eagle was deemed that it wasn’t able to hunt anymore so it had been trained to fly in stadiums.”
“The eagle wasn’t hurt,” he said. “It wasn’t abused or injured in any way.”
Here is footage from another student:
This video shows what happens post crash:
To prove the bird named “Lewis” was still in good health afterward, the trainer uploaded this video:
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