Captain Rowan D. Falls was a human man who is now a ghost.
Captain Rowan D. Falls was one of the many hopeful suitors of beauteous Melanie Ravenswood in the Ravenswoods' golden age. Like Melanie's other suitors, Barry died in mysterious circumstances which had actually been engineered by Melanie's father Henry — in his case, accidentally rowing off a waterfall. The Captain was buried alongside Melanie's other three early suitors (Barry Claude, Ignatius Knight and Sawyer Bottom) in a crypt at the edge of the Ravenswood estate, where the unfortunate four's ghosts still dwell, hoping Melanie will marry them even now. In the 1880's, the Phantom replaced the four Stretching Portraits of Melanie by herself he had in his Stretching Room with Stretching Portraits of the four ill-fated suitors with Melanie, from which Melanie's image disappeared as the portraits stretched.
Behind the scenes
Rowan D. Falls was added to the Phantom Manor ride as part of its 2019 updates. Like the other three suitors added in said refurbishment, his name is a pun mirroring his way of death, as "Rowan D. Falls" is pronounced as a distorted version of "row on the falls".
Rowan's method of death mirrors one of the original four Phantom Manor stretching portraits, where this was an imaginary fate depicted as happening to Melanie herself.