Akron police officer hailed as a hero for saving man jumping off bridge

Akron police say an officer saved a 24-year-old man as he was attempting to jump off a bridge on Friday.

AKRON, Ohio — An Akron police officer is being hailed as a hero after saving one man’s life on Friday.

At around 10:30 a.m., Akron police responded to an initial call on Arch Street and North Adolph Street for a man in a crisis. Upon arriving, officers found the man in the driver’s seat of his vehicle in the middle of the street and tried to de-escalate the situation.

Moments later, the man put the car in reverse and drove away from officers before he exited his vehicle and began running northbound toward Route 8. A second responding officer, Kyle Cunningham, exited his cruiser while the man was climbing over the rail of the bridge.

Cunningham jumped into action by running over and grabbing the man just as he was letting go of the railing.

“Somehow, the officer managed to hold onto the 24-year-old man until additional officers arrived and assisted in pulling him to safety,” said Akron police in a release. 

He told 3News that even as the hanging man tried to wriggle out of his coat, he would not give up on him.

“Whatever it took, I wasn’t going to let go,” he said.

It was the distressed man’s panicked parents who alerted 911.

“My son is claiming he’s going to jump off a bridge,” the mother is heard saying to a dispatcher in a 911 call.

Akron PD Chief Steve Mylett said the parents are deeply grateful, and he is also grateful for Cunningham’s effort.

“It’s the heroic actions of this officer that this family isn’t dealing with a tremendous tragedy right now,” he said. “I am so proud of what he did and other officers on that bridge. Hero is an understatement. He put himself at risk for a complete stranger.”

A humble Cunningham said being able to save the man “means everything.”

“There’s so many officers here that in the same situation, they would do the same thing,” he said. “I was just fortunate enough to be there at the right time, the right call, and when my number was called, I was able to perform the task at hand and be successful and help him.”

Akron PD reported the man was later transported to a local hospital for medical evaluation.

Chief Mylett said the man has been committed to a medical facility. He said his prayer is that he gets the help he needs to turn his life around. He encourages anyone that’s having suicidal thoughts to please call the suicide hotline at 988.

MORE ON WKYC… 

26-year-old Da’Quan Mar’Ta Isaac was captured Tuesday in the 700 block of Hazel Street in Akron.

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