A Kentucky man died Friday morning after he fell over the handrail of a stairway and onto a walkway below in Georgia.
A news release from a police department says that 57-year old Douglas Welch of Nicholasville, KY., was on a metal stairway leading to Savannah's historic Factors Walk when he fell over the metal handrail and onto the stone walkway below.
Two Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department officers witnessed the fall about 12:30 a.m. and attempted to render aid. Responding emergency medical technicians declared him dead at the scene.
"He was a wonderful friend, he's been a friend of mine for over thirty years. We're a family business so he's literally a part of our family," explains Jay Mesinger, Welch's boss at Jay Mesinger Corporate Jet Sales.
"The outpouring we've had from industry coworkers has been overwhelming. I wrote an email and sent it to all of our customers and I titled it 'our industry got smaller today' because he was a huge presence in our industry and a wonderful man."
SCMPD Criminal Investigations detectives contacted Welch's family in Kentucky shortly after the fall.
Thousands of tourists are packing Savannah for the city's St. Patrick's Day celebration this weekend, and the riverfront in the downtown historic district is a favorite spot for bar-hopping.