On the first day of the week, we gathered together to break bread, and Paul talked with them and prolonged his speech until midnight, because he had intended to depart on the morrow. Many lights lit the upper chamber where we gathered. A young man named Eu'tychus sat in the window and sank into a deep sleep. Paul talked on and on; eventually, the young man, overcome by sleep, fell from the third storey. He was considered dead, but Paul went down and bending over and embracing him said, "Do not be alarmed, his life is in him." Then Paul returned upstairs and breaking bread and eating, he conversed with them for a long time, until daybreak, and that was when he left. They took the lad away alive and were not a little comforted.
Luke is also known to us as a doctor. Here he gives testimony about Paul's single-mindedness, his devotion to his work and his care for the people he served. Doctor Luke tells us about Paul's willingness to take personal responsibility. It was a serious accident. We can wonder what the impact would have been if the lad had died. Clearly some assumed this straight away.
Not everyone there was able to stay awake during the long hours of the night. Midnight is not the usual hour for listening to a travelling Rabbi explain the work of Jesus. Paul was obviously able to keep going. But when the lad fell, the gathering was alarmed. Some felt such a fall had to be fatal. It's a poignant account. Paul embraced him. Maybe in his sleep the boy was able to fall without serious injury. Some suggest that the "embrace" was Paul's administration of "mouth to mouth" resuscitation? But I think it is more likely that Luke is telling us that Paul "kept his cool". Was it also a matter of Luke thinking the fall was fatal? That might explain why Doctor Luke does not tell us what he did in response to the accident. Paul seems to have had some basic medical skills and Luke tells us he had the presence of mind to check up on young man's recovery.
Despite the fact that these believers might have had to go to work the next day, they allowed their routines to be suspended in order that Paul could instruct and encourage them. And that is what he did.
It would have been a massive tragedy to the little community if the boy had died. But he fell from a height and lived. Luke tells us that that event lived on in the story of that community and they too were able to tell any who asked of the spiritual comfort that had come to them through the work of Paul and the good news he had brought to Troas.