Meeting His Guardian Angel Six Years Later
by emilycao on January 31, 2014 - 12:00am
On the National Post’s website, the article “Six years after a stranger talked him out of a suicide bridge jump, London man finally gets to say thank you” published on January 30, 2014 by Harry Wallop, talks about Jonny Benjamin and his savior Neil Laybourn. Six years ago, Mr. Laybourn was walking across Waterloo Bridge, in London, when he stopped Mr. Benjamin from jumping. They talked to each other for about 25 minutes until the police took Mr. Benjamin to the hospital. Ever since that day, Mr. Laybourn, a 31-year-old personal trainer, thought a lot about the young man and wondered what had happened to him. With the help of the Rethink Mental Illness charity, Mr. Benjamin, 26, started a campaign to find the stranger who saved him. Through the social media Facebook, Mr. Laybourn’s fiancée was able to recognize him in the description of “Mike”, the nickname given for the stranger. This week, the two men reunited in a room above a pub and Mr. Benjamin was able to thank his savior after all these years. Mr. Benjamin says that he is not trying to romanticize their story since not all suicide attempts are avoided by bystanders. However, it is important to prove that there will always be someone to support you and listen to you.
News about suicides is always saddening and often the entourage of the victim is oblivious of what the person felt. After hearing about suicides, we wish we could have done something about it. We can always spread positive energy around us and sometimes, only a smile or a greeting can brighten someone’s day. Smile to strangers, talk to someone who doesn’t look well, listen to your friends’ worries; you never know whose life you can change!