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.