The man was sitting on the edge of an overpass in Waltham Cross, England, with a rope around his neck when Devonte Cafferkey, 13, Sammy Farah, 14, and Shawn Young, 12, chanced upon him. Rather than panic as most kids their age might, they tried to keep him back from the edge while talking him out of his suicide plan. When the man tried to jump, the boys grabbed on to him and refused to let go.
As two of the boys held on to the troubled man, Shawn calmly rang for help. As they waited for help to arrive, two other passers-by came to the boys’ aide and they joined in holding the man to keep him from going over the edge.
The boys who go to St Mary’s High School in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire are now to be recognised nationally for their bravery at the A10 overpass in Waltham Cross, last September.
47-year-old Joanne Stammers, who is registered disabled with Klippel–Trénaunay syndrome, a rare disability that makes her highly prone to blood clotting, will also be honoured for joining the boys and helping to hold on to the man, though it left her with bruises all over her arms. Another man, James Higlett, who also did his part in saving the man’s life, will be honoured.
A date for the awards presentation to all 5 heroes has not yet been set. The award is from the Royal Humane Society, a charity promoting life-saving intervention. The boys have already picked up Special Achievement Awards at the Broxbourne Youth Awards for their bravery.