Harrison Police & Nutley Rowing Team save suicidal man

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Harrison Police averted a potential tragedy Wednesday afternoon when they saved a suicidal man from jumping.

And they had help.

Officers were dispatched to the Bridge Street Bridge on a report of a suicidal black male who was about to jump into the Passaic River.

Ptl. Gonzalez located the man standing on the eastbound sidewalk towards the center of the bridge. The officer made a U-turn and stopped about 50-feet west of him and exited the patrol car.

The man then threw his wallet and a small plastic bag on the sidewalk and started to climb over the bridge’s railing.

Gonzalez ran over and grabbed the man by the arm but could not hold onto him and he fell into the river.

Luck was on the man’s side and at the same time, the Nutley Rowing Team happened to be passing under the bridge.  They were able to help by bringing the man to the eastern bank of the river, where the Harrison Fire Department and Gonzalez retrieved him. 

He was awake and breathing.

The boat was operated by Judith McIntire and occupied by Mike Dehaas and Phill Amiths.
Harrison Fire Department later transported the man, of Maplewood to St. Michael’s Hospital for treatment.

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Jillian has a passion for news, giving voice to the voiceless and telling stories that make an impact. A New Jersey native, she spent the past two years as a multimedia journalist/one-man-band at WTAP-TV, the NBC affiliate in Parkersburg, West Virginia, where she covered everything from meth busts to fracking to the homeless to a young man struck by lightening. She was her news director’s “go to health reporter” and also covered many education and political stories. She frequently interviewed the mayors of Parkersburg, Vienna and Williamstown, WV and Belpre and Marietta, Ohio. She interviewed OH Gubernatorial Candidate Ed Fitzgerald and OH Congressional Candidate Jennifer Garrison, as well as WV Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and WV Senator Joe Manchin. Jillian was a regular fixture at the local police, sheriff’s departments, prosecutors’ offices and courthouses. Many looked forward to her ‘Mom of the Month’ series. Her story about two women who lost their children to heroin was widely recognized, along with her much loved piece on the Battle Against Cystic Fibrosis band camp. In her free time, Jillian enjoys yoga; working out, live music, spending time with friends on both coasts and the Mid-Ohio Valley. Follow on Twitter @JillianRis

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