MLB umpire John Tumpane was a true hero on June 28 when he prevented a woman from jumping off a bridge in Pittsburgh. The story of how John did it is absolutely heartwarming.
John Tumpane, 34, made the most important save of his entire life on June 28 when he prevented a girl from committing suicide by jumping off the Roberto Clemente Bridge in Pittsburgh. The Major League Baseball umpire saw the woman climbing over the railing of the fairly empty bridge near PNC Park on his way back from a run and lunch. “Obviously, that grabbed my attention,” told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette before he acted as umpire in the Pirates game against the Tampa Bay Rays. “I asked a couple in front of me, ‘What’s this lady trying to do?’ and they said, ‘I don’t know.’ ” John ran over to the woman and asked her what she was doing. Click here to see pics of MLB Opening Day 2017.
“I just wanted to get a better look of the city from this side,” she said to him, according to John. “Oh no,” the umpire said as he wrapped his arm around hers. “You don’t want to do that. It’s just as good over here. Let’s go grab some lunch and talk.” “No, no, no. I’m better off on this side. Just let me go,” she said. “I’m not going to let you go,” he said. “Let’s talk this out. We’ll get you back over here.” “No one wants to help me,” she said. “Just let me go.” “No, we’re here to help you.” “You’ll forget me tomorrow.” “I’ll never forget you,” he said. “You can have my promise on that.”
John was then able to get someone else to call 911 as the woman tried to slip away from him. He wrapped both his arms around her, though she fought him and dangled her feet off the edge, forcing him to hold on tighter. “I was thinking, ‘God, this has got to be a good ending, not a bad ending,’ and held on for dear life,” John said. “She said, ‘You don’t care about me.’ I said, ‘I care.’ She said, ‘I just want to end it right now. I want to be in a better place.’ I said, ‘You’re going to be all right.’ ”
Luckily, she was alright in the end. A police boat, helicopter, ambulance, fire truck and police officer arrived to help and they put a life preserver on the woman and then handcuffed her to the bridge. Before they took the woman to the hospital in an ambulance, John asked the woman for her first name and prayed for her. “I told her, ‘I didn’t forget her, and we’d be here, and she’s better off on this side than the other side.’ ” he said. “I just want her to know that.” City police spokeswoman Sonya Toler said the woman has no life-threatening injuries. John said he hopes to see the woman before he leaves Pittsburgh to umpire another MLB game.
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