After noticing a man on the side of a bridge, three young schoolboys decided they couldn’t just let a stranger take his own life. After a struggle to hold him, one boy was able to alert a passerby and call the police, who took the man to the hospital.
Over 5,800 people took their own life in 2017, the year these boys saved this man. With quick thinking and selfless heroics, they saved one man from becoming just another statistic.
The Three Young Heroes
The three boys involved were Shawn Young, then 12, Devonte Cafferkey, then 13, and Sammy Farah, then 14. The boys had been friends for years, and were on their way to the snack shop after school in 2017, before going to Cafferkey’s home.
The trio crossed this bridge every day.
As they approached it, someone told them to be careful because there was a “crazy man” on the bridge. As they got closer, they discovered there really was a man on the ledge, barely holding onto the railing.
The boys didn’t hesitate but jumped into action. Farah and Cafferkey held onto the man’s arms and legs to stop him from toppling over, while Young attempted to recruit help, knowing they couldn’t do this themselves.
One Good Samaritan Stopped
Joanne Stammers, 49, almost crashed into Young as he tried to cross the road in a frantic attempt to get help.
She immediately recognized “absolute fear” in the boy’s eyes, and got out to help him. Others stood around and filmed the struggle, but did not jump in to help.
Between the three boys, Stammers, and one other man, James Higlett, they were able to restrain the man until police were able to get there.
Young recalls the man just repeating “let go” over and over, and says that he was “scared he was going to attack me. I didn’t want to see him die.”
Two Years Later
Now, two years later, the boys recall the incident but still believe that they did the right thing. Young’s mom praised the boys, saying that there was “nothing I could fault this time… these boys could have walked by and laughed as other boys would.”
All three boys received awards by the Royal Humane Society and made local and national news. They even appeared on the Steve Harvey Show after the incident.
Young and Cafferkey are both in Year 10 together, while Farah is studying at a college in London. The group still regularly keeps in touch.