Three Boys Found Man About to Jump Off Bridge, Grabbed Him and Didn’t Let Go

In this modern world people are not trying to help other people when they see that something unjust is happening to them, the tendency not to get involved is very high.

However, children are still pure and do not have these barriers in their mentality, so when they see that something tragic is going to happen they take an action and try to prevent it.

This was the case with the teenagers Devonte Cafferkey, 13, Sammy Farah, 14, and Shawn Young, 12, who on Sept. 21, 2017, prevented the suicide of a man. These boys were coming home from their school, St Mary’s High School in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, when they saw a man sitting at the edge of an overpass in Waltham Cross, with a rope strung around his neck.

Although they are very young they did not get afraid or panicked but approached the suicidal man convincing him not to take his life. But, their attempts were futile as the man still decided to jump, and at his actual attempt they grabbed onto him and refused to let him go.

One of the boys, Shawn called for help, and fortunately there were two by-passers who came to help in the rescue of the man. Their names were James Higlett and Joanne Stammers and helped the boys in their courageous attempt of rescue, but when they approached they saw that the man was crying.

Devonte appeared on ITV’s This Morning show explaining how they have acted that particular day. They ran to help him when they saw a rope around his neck and then they started to persuade him not to jump. The man was crying and wiping his eyes, and the boys repeated saying: ‘You’ve got family, it’s not worth it.’”

The parents of these teenagers were overwhelmed by this event and they explained how it affected their children.

Carol, Shawn’s mother said that while the boys were holding on to the man, he passed out and that made it even harder for them to hold onto him. But, they were persistent and hold him back till they received help from the random by-passers. After that the suicidal man was taken to hospital at around 6:20 pm.

Carol knows the friends of her son and she could not believe their maturity considering their age. She listened carefully her son when he explained what had happened to him that day and while following his story she smiled and felt proud for having such wonderful son.

Shawn passed the mobile to his friends so that he could keep the man back and persuade him from jumping and told the boys “if it rings, don’t answer it.”

Mohamed Farah, Sammy’s dad, said that his boy is “quiet and humble”, but he is always willing to help someone in need. He finds this act courageous and selfless.

Jacqueline Cafferkey, Devonte’s mother is very proud of her boy but she found the incident traumatic for her son as he did not want to go to school that Monday and that “never happens” explained his mom. She is boosting his confidence and keeps telling him that he has saved someone’s life and that is a remarkable thing.

The by-passer that helped in saving this man, Joanne Stammers, is disabled with Klippel–Trénaunay syndrome. This disease makes her blood highly susceptible to clotting. However, her condition did not prevent her from helping the man although she ended up with bruises all over her arms.

On that particular day, Joanne was on her way back from seeing her mother in Waltham Cross. She was regularly going under the bridge once a week and at that occasion Shawn asked for help. However, this event was also traumatic for her and now she avoids the route as much as possible.

For this heroic act the five heroes will get awarded by the Royal Humane Society, which is a charity supporting life-saving interventions.

Shawn’s mother, Carolis very proud of the heroic act of all three boys and it is good that they will receive recognition for their bravery. They received the Special Achievement Awards at the Broxbourne Youth Awards for their bravery.

Stammers acknowledges that it is a “great honor” and she still remains in contact with Devonte’s mother. She admires the determination of these boys in trying to save someone’s life and that other children will find this act inspiring and be helpful to someone in need.


In the USA suicide has become a major national public health problem. According to the statistics, the yearly U.S. suicide rate has increased by 24% in the period between 1999 and 2014, from 10.5 to 13.0 suicides per 100,000 people, and that is the highest rate recorded in 28 years. Plus, this data could be even higher as suicide is generally not reported due to the stigma surrounding it.

The reasons for a person committing suicide are complex and numerous. The risk factors can be divided in groups:

  • Health factors, including serious mental illness, depression, and substance use issues, and severe physical health conditions such as unbearable pain.

  • Environmental factors, including divorce, relationship concerns, unemployment, financial crisis and access to lethal means.

  • Historical factors, meaning a family history of suicide, previous suicide attempts, and a history of childhood abuse or trauma.

According to Christine Moutier, MD, chief medical officer of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, there is never a single cause of suicide, but many risk factors contribute for the person to commit a suicide.

Experts believe that the only way to dissuade people from committing suicide is giving people hope in life and that is to be their driving force for survival.

Likewise, Joel Dvoskin, Ph.D., ABPP, a clinical and forensic psychologist in Arizona and New Mexico believes that despair is the main reason for suicide and the only cure for despair is hope.

No matter how difficult life can be there is always hope that things will get better eventually and people should know this at all time.