For others, the demolition was a sign of progress on the Raleigh campus.
The field house was built in 1936 and stood for nearly 80 years. It was part of Riddick Stadium where the Wolfpack played some of its first football games.
University planners said the building, which is now in pieces, had simply outlived its usefulness and was no longer usable. Time and the lack of money to keep it up eventually led to its demolition.
Over the years, alumni said the old building had been repurposed. It housed the campus police force, as well as contractors working on nearby projects.
One N.C. State alum was sad to see it go.
"It's sad," said NC State alum Dave Parker. "I was a student here in the early and mid 80s and used to walk through here every day."
Parker's father-in-law played football for the Wolfpack in the old Riddick Stadium in the 1950s.
"I wanted to take a shot of them tearing down the field house because he would want to see that," Parker said.
Alumni also said for nearly half a century students used the field house as a way to get to the tunnel under the tracks. Now the plan is to use the space to improve pedestrian access and safety near the tunnel.