A South Carolina police officer with a knack for helping others to put things into perspective is being credited for saving a suicidal person – for the second time in month.
The State in Columbia, S.C., and the Washington Post both told the story of Michael Blackmore, a patrol office in Columbia, who was a first responder to a man threatening to jump off a bridge in the early morning hours of Saturday, Sept. 10.
Blackmore literally helped talk the man off the ledge by turning to one of the most proven of Southern pastimes … football.
“I just wanted to get his mind off of what was bothering him,” Blackmore told The State in an interview last week. He found out the man was a fan of the Washington Redskins and the hometown South Carolina Gamecocks.
“You’re just having a bad night,” Blackmore said to the man, reminding him that another football weekend had arrived and his teams would be in action.
He also pointed out that the Redskins were also just a week away from hosting their fiercest rival, the Dallas Cowboys, this past Sunday.
Blackmore ultimately grabbed the man’s wrists, and two fellow officers pulled him safely from the bridge’s railing. They took the man to a local hospital, making it clear he faced no criminal charges.
And this wasn’t even Blackmore’s first time talking football to someone in deep despair. A month earlier, he was called to the scene where a man was preparing to jump from a parking garage in Columbia. His gift gab came in handy then, too.
“He told me he was a Notre Dame fan,” Blackmore said of the man who was safely retrieved.
So even if football isn’t necessarily a religion in the South, as many have said, it’s at least been proven to be a means to personal salvation for many.
(© 2016 WTSP)