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Friends gather for Minn. teen with hypothermia

  • Associated Press
  • December 21, 2013 - 5:54 PM

ST. CLOUD, Minn. — Friends gathered to pray for a college student who had severe hypothermia after spending the night outside in subzero temperatures.

Police say 19-year-old Alyssa Jo Lommel had been out drinking with friends Dec. 6 and was dropped off at her Duluth house around midnight. A passer-by spotted Lommel on the front stoop of the house about nine hours later.

Friends gathered Friday at Cathedral High School in St. Cloud to pray for the alumna, according to the St. Cloud Times (http://on.sctimes.com/1evwnRk ). The University of Minnesota Duluth student remained in critical condition Friday at a St. Paul hospital.

Lommel's roommate, Abbie Hagen, said Lommel's condition is improving slowly.

"It's baby steps, but it's very positive," Hagen said.

Lommel's former Cathedral gymnastics coach, Joel Stark-Haws, told attendees at the service she's an "inspiring, driven young lady." Teammates described her as "hardworking" and "always happy," he said.

The service was videotaped and will be shown to the Lommel family soon, Principal Lynn Grewing said. Friend Katie Windschitl and others hope it will give the family a much-needed morale boost.

"It's awesome to see all the support," she said.

Friends have been organizing fundraisers for Lommel, and a fund has been set up for her at Bremer Bank in St. Cloud.

© 2014 Star Tribune