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Good Samaritan uses faith to help man come down off bridge

Rick Jewell told the man on the bridge that God loves him. (Kinzer/KTUL){p}{/p}
Rick Jewell told the man on the bridge that God loves him. (Kinzer/KTUL)

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You can call it a coincidence if you'd like. That the location of the highway sign structure that a man in distress chose to camp out on for most of the day just happens to be right next to that giant cross that is lit up during the holidays.

"I stayed over here and prayed for 15 minutes when I first got here, and then my son says, 'Look over there Dad, there’s a cross right behind him,'" said Rick Jewell.

We first saw Rick from across the street. He came to the scene out of concern, standing next to the railroad tracks looking up at the guy above.

"And as a whole, as Oklahoma, we ought to just pray for this man’s safety and that we can find him the help he needs, cause obviously, he needed something," he said.

"I just hope he don’t jump man," said Trei Jackson, on the scene as well. Everyone worried, wondering what, if anything else, could be done as the man entered his sixth hour upon the structure.

"I’d like to get up there and talk to him is what I’d really like to do," laughed Jewell.

We asked him what he would say to him. "That there’s more to life than the end of this, you know, and you have to be a believer, there’s something more to life than what’s going through his mind," he said.

And with that, we went back across the street to get ready for the news when suddenly...

"Hey Trei, did he come down?"

And this was maybe ten minutes after we interviewed Rick and Trei.

"Ole’ boy told him that Jesus loves you basically and that you ain’t do no wrong, to come down, just ask for help. He came down," said Jackson.

"God loves you guy," said Jewell.

That is the core message that Rick ended up hollering to the fella from way down below.

"I just started talking to him and I told him there was more to life than what he was doing and that God loved him. He looked at me and I told him to throw me his cigarettes, he threw me those, I said throw me that rope, he threw me that rope, and I said now get down from there. I said they’re going to help you. He headed down. Simple. It’s crazy. But I also told you what I did for 15 minutes over there before you showed up, I was praying. So, that had a lot to do with it, I’m sure," he said.

A confluence of events; a man in distress, a well-placed cross, an inspired do-gooder intervening for a troubled soul, and a final message to the masses for action.

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"I think as a state, as a whole, we need to find something for mental illness for people and have more resources," he said.


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