Photo by Hastings-on-Hudson Police Dept.
Officer Jessie Ferreira Cavallo of the Hasting-on-Hudson Police Department was on her way to work when she spotted the young boy running down the side of the Saw Mill River Parkway in Yonkers. He then climbed the guardrail and leapt.
Officer Ferreira Cavallo immediately pulled her car over, grabbed what emergency supplies she could, and did something few people would have thought to do: She jumped after the boy.
Speaking to USA Today, Ferreira Cavallo says, “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.’”
Joined by another woman — later identified as Specialist Nicole McKenzie, formerly of the US Army and now with the New York Army National Guard — the two got the teen into a neck brace, splint his arm, and cleared his airway. Emergency services transported the boy to Westchester Medical Center
Officer Ferreira Cavallo then got up and went to work until 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,” she says.
News 12 Westchester is reporting that the boy is between 12 and 13 years old and is a student at the Andrus School near to where he leapt from the bridge. As of Monday morning, he is expected to survive.
The decorated officer hopes she’ll have the opportunity to visit the boy she saved. “I just hope that he’s doing well,” she says. “I just want to give him a hug.”