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NYPD officers save man threatening to jump off Verrazano Bridge

High above New York Harbor, one police officer's immigration story may have saved a man's life.

An NYPD officer successfully talked a man off the Verrazano Bridge Monday afternoon.

The man, who police described as "despondent" and in his 30s, was noticed at about 12:30 p.m. Monday, after someone called in that they saw him park his car on the bridge and “went over the edge.”

When cops arrived, they found the man standing on the bridge’s upper level on its outer edge, about midway across. The officers determined that he spoke only Cantonese Chinese, and a cop who spoke Cantonese was called in. Police Officer Yi Huang, from the Fifth Precinct in Chinatown, arrived and learned from the man that he was upset over an argument he had been having with his 18-year-old daughter, and was also upset over finances.

Officer Huang also learned that the man came from a village calledTaishan in the Guangdong province in southern China, where the officer’s family happened to be from and from where Officer Huang immigrated at age four to New York City.

Huang had to stay about 15 feet from the man, who threatened to jump should he come any closer. Shouting in the wind, rain and thunder that began late this afternoon, Huang told the man about his own family's experiences as immigrants, and asked him to think about seeing his daughter at her wedding, or meeting his grandchildren one day.

As the two talked for hours, another cop was able to climb along the bridge, and grab him, and the man was safely taken down at about 4:30 p.m. He is now at Staten Island University Hospital, in good condition.

 
 
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