About 900 students turned out Monday evening for a St. Thomas tradition, the late-night study-break breakfast that is served at the beginning of finals week by a volunteer crew of university administrators and staff.

The evening was marked by something unusual that on one hand is kind of funny, and on the other hand, is kind of sad.

A squirrel showed up during the breakfast.

Apparently released by students, the squirrel scampered around the Student Dining Room and was last seen diving under some kitchen equipment. As one observer noted, at first it did seem funny when you could trace the squirrel’s progress around the room by the wave of students jumping to their feet and, in some cases, onto their chairs.

However, some students were genuinely frightened, and the squirrel was terrified. As of Tuesday afternoon, it had not yet been found; it is possible that it died when hiding in the area of some hot pipes.

(Photo by Onar Primitivo, Multicultural Student Affairs.)