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Firefighters rescue man from suicide attempt

firefighter rescue suicide attempt

Lt. Dan LaBerge said one end of a yellow rope was around the man's neck, the other secured to a nearby pole

By Paul Feely
The New Hampshire Union Leader 

MANCHESTER, N.H. — City firefighters are being credited with saving the life of a suicidal man found with a rope around his neck on the top deck of the Elliot Hospital parking garage Thursday around 2 a.m.

"I looked across the top level, and I saw a man on the other side of the guardrail, on the opposite side of the garage from me," 16-year veteran Lt. Dan LaBerge said Thursday evening. "I started to move toward him. That's when I saw something yellow around his neck."

LaBerge said one end of a yellow rope was around the man's neck, the other secured to a nearby pole. The man appeared to be leaning slightly forward.

"I knew if I rushed toward him and tried to pull him back and he went off the side, with his size and positioning, he would probably pull both of us over," said Laberge.

Instead, he continued to silently approach from one side, while firefighters Adam Langlois, Scott Aboshar, and Jonathan Fosher II moved in from the other. LaBerge said once everyone was in position, he told the man they were there to help and things would be OK.

"I distracted him, and Fosher was able to grab him and pull him off the wall and over the guardrail," said LaBerge, who then checked to make sure the man, whose identity was not released, didn't have any weapons or other dangerous items.

"I apologized to him for taking him to the ground forcefully, and he pulled a note out of his pocket with his name, contact information, and how he would like his final arrangements handled," said LaBerge.

"It was a case of being in the right place at the right time," said Manchester Fire Chief Dan Goonan. "And in this case, it's very good timing for this man."

The 47-year-old was taken to Elliot Hospital for evaluation.

"The crew from Station 10 did an outstanding job," said Assistant Fire Chief Richard McGahey of the call reporting a hanging at 4 Elliot Way.

"Usually when you respond to a call for a hanging, it's too late when you get there," LaBerge said. "We definitely made a difference for this guy. We saved a life today."

Copyright 2017 The New Hampshire Union Leader
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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