Investigators are still trying to figure out how an NYU student got stuck between two buildings on school property over the weekend.
School officials say friends of Asher Vongtau, 19, reported him missing Sunday morning.
NYU public safety officers eventually found Vongtau stuck in a shaftway between a dorm at 80 Lafayette Street and an adjacent parking garage.
Vongtau did not live in the dorm where he got stuck.
It took firefighters a little over an hour to cut him loose from the shaft.
Fire officials say it was about 18 inches wide.
"It was a two course cinder block wall. Our rescue companies breached the wall with power tools - hydraulic tools. Our Squad company lowered breathing apparatus to the victim to keep him on air while we were extricating him. He was removed alive," said FDNY Deputy Chief Joseph Schiralli.
Vongtau's friends say they got concerned when they hadn't heard from him for awhile.
"His phone was off and he hadn't checked into an NYU building in the last couple of days," said one friend.
They would not have found them for who knows how long and would probably be dead right now," said another friend.
Vongtau was conscious when he was removed from the shaft.
He was taken to Bellevue Hospital for observation.
Vongtau's father tweeted that he was trying to get to New York from his hometown in Nigeria and also tweeted a thank you to the FDNY for saving his son. After he was found, Vongtau's sister tweeted "Still taking everything in myself".
In a statement, NYU said, "The circumstances of how the student came to be in this space are unclear to us. We are very glad to say the least that student was found and rescued."