48°F
weather icon Clear
app-logo
RJ App
Vegas News, Alerts, ePaper

Man reunited with stranger who prevented his suicide 6 years ago

A UK man has been reunited with the stranger who prevented his suicide six years ago.

Jonny Benjamin was 20 years old in 2008 when he decided to take his own life by jumping off the Waterloo Bridge in London.

He was stopped by a man who saw him climb over the railing and asked him to get a cup of coffee and talk.

“He was very calm and said ‘Please don’t do this, I’ve been where you are and you can get better. Let’s have a coffee and we can talk about this,’” Benjamin said. “He reminded me of what people do every day so the normality of it was really inviting.”

The man inspired Benjamin’s recovery. Now a mental health campaigner, Benjamin decided earlier this month to try to track down the man to thank him.

He teamed up with the mental health charity Rethink and encouraged people to tweet with the hashtag #findmike, although he couldn’t remember the actual name of the person who had made such a difference in his life.

Within a couple weeks, the story had spread on social media and received widespread media coverage. Neil Laybourn was alerted to the story by his fiancee, who saw it on Facebook.

The two arranged a reunion for Tuesday. Benjamin said he didn’t immediately recognize Laybourn, but there was something familiar about him. And then they started talking.

“There was a moment that everything just came back to me. I could see him there on that bridge and there he was now, in front of me,” Benjamin said. “It was just overwhelming.”

A documentary about the two is due out this spring.

Contact Stephanie Grimes at sgrimes@reviewjournal.com. Find her on Twitter: @steph_grimes

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Will your smartphone be the next doctor’s office?

The same devices used to take selfies and type out tweets are being repurposed and commercialized for quick access to information needed for monitoring a patient’s health.

Jason Segel confronts mental health ‘stigma’

In his new series “Shrinking,” Segel portrays “psychological vigilante” Jimmy Laird, a brutally honest therapist who is dealing with a full emotional plate.

 
Annual COVID vaccines similar to flu shots proposed

Under the proposal from the Food and Drug Administration, Americans would no longer need to keep track of how many shots they have received.

Chelated iron fertilizers need water to work

If you are going to apply an iron fertilizer it should be in a chelated form. The best all-around chelate to use is a chelated iron fertilizer called EDDHA.