Wednesday, January 03, 2007

What Would Batman Do?


A Good Samaritan jumped onto the tracks at a Manhattanville subway station at 137th Street and Broadway Tuesday afternoon to save the life of a stranger who had fallen after having an apparent seizure.

The man stumbled off the platform onto the tracks, where he could have been killed if not for the heroic efforts of 50-year-old Wesley Autrey who did the unthinkable, jumping onto the tracks with a train approaching.

"He was stuck and I was like, 'Wow. Do I struggle here?' If I got him up, then I would have to go for the ground. And I didn't have that much time. So I just went for the gutter thing," said Autrey. "I just dove on top of him and held him down, cause I knew there would be enough clearance for us."

Autrey, a construction worker who lives in the neighborhood, grabbed the man and pinned him down in the gutter between the running rails while a downtown Number 1 train passed overhead, miraculously leaving both men without a scratch.

"I had to have the guy pinned down, because like I said, he was in a seizure," said Autrey. "He was incoherent. He was fighting, pushing and pushing against me. So I had to lock myself down, so he wouldn't push me back, and possibly my head get hit."

Autrey's two young daughters, ages four and six, who were with him at the time of the incident, watched in horror while the situation unfolded. When the train finally came to a stop, Autrey called out to them to let them know he was alive.

Autrey guessed there was maybe an inch or inch and a half clearance between his head and the underside of the train.

"Remember, the gutter maybe got like a 12-inch drop. So his body fitted in there perfectly. And I just laid on top of him, and had to pin him down," he said.

The man Autrey saved, 20-year-old film student Cameron Hollopeter, was taken to St. Luke's hospital as a precautionary measure, where he is listed in stable condition. He is expected to be recover.

When asked if he considers himself a hero, Autrey said absolutely not. He said he was just doing what he thinks anyone else would do.

"No, I don't consider myself a hero," he said. "I just went to someone's aid. Someone who was in need of help."

Via Kyria.