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NY police officer jumps off overpass to save boy’s life

Low clearance (8'6") bridge for the railroad. (mliu92/Flickr)
August 16, 2018

On Friday, a New York police officer sprang into action after she spotted a young boy jumping from an overpass.

Officer Jessie Ferreira Cavallo, of the Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y., police department was on her way to work when she saw the boy jump from an overpass, and quickly jumped over after him to render aid, USA Today reported last week.

“Everything happened so fast and I think my adrenaline was pumping so high,” said Cavallo.  She jumped several feet from an overpass to the concrete below where the boy was unresponsive.

The 12-year-old boy is now said to be recovering in the hospital.

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“I wasn’t thinking too much. I just knew, when I looked down and saw him … he looked dead. I couldn’t see anything other than blood. I thought to myself, ‘He needs help. I need to help him,'” she said.

Another woman, later identified as U.S. Army Solider Nicole McKenzie, also stopped to assist and the pair were able to save the boy by putting a neck brace and a splint on him from McKenzie’s medical kit.

“Both me and her together, we were able to aid him and assist him,” Cavallo said.

Cavallo said the boy did open his eyes but remained unresponsive. “I was talking,” she said. “He wasn’t really responding back.”

A police spokesperson said the boy suffered a broken arm, broken nose, and leg injuries but is expected to survive.

The boy was a runaway from the Andrus campus in Yonkers, New York, which is a private, nonprofit organization that provides services for vulnerable children, children with special needs, and children with severe emotional and behavior issues.

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The boy was followed by staff from the facility, who were talking to him when he jumped.

Cavallo said none of it sunk in until the next day.

“Friday, after this whole thing happened, I went to work and worked to 11 p.m. I didn’t realize what was going on until yesterday. That’s when it hit me. I didn’t realize how high it was. It seemed doable. It didn’t seem that high. I thought I jumped over a brick wall, or a cement barrier. It was so fast. It was more like tunnel vision. I saw the boy and I needed to get to him. I didn’t see anything else,” Cavallo said.

Cavallo said she was planning on visiting the boy in the hospital on Sunday.

“I just hope that he’s doing well,” she said. “I just want to give him a hug.”

28-year-old Cavallo has been awarded six lifesaving awards during her young career.

She has also been recognized for undercover work with the FBI and a county task force.