A Spirit Week game of tug-of-war at South El Monte High School in El Monte, California, took a tragic turn yesterday, sending two students to the emergency room with several missing fingers.
18-year-olds Edith Rodriguez and Pablo Ocegueda — a varsity soccer player and a football player, respectively — were among 40 students participating in the lunchtime game when the rope suddenly snapped, amputating four fingers on both students' right hand.
Rodriguez also lost her left thumb.
It remained unclear how the horrific injuries came to pass, but Los Angeles County supervising fire dispatcher Eddie Pickett told NBC News the rope was apparently wrapped tightly around the students' hands.
As of Monday afternoon, both Rodriguez and Ocegueda were stable and being prepped for surgery at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, where doctors hoped to reattach the torn digits. There has been no update since on their condition.
"We'll review the activity with district administration," said Superintendent Edward Zuniga, noting that future tug-of-war games have yet to be canceled. "We're in the early stages. We just want to make sure we have all the facts straight before we talk about changing activities."
[screengrab via KTLA]