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He was dangling off an overpass. Strangers gathered below to catch him

A group of Good Samaritans in north Houston on Sunday gathered on a highway to help two deputies trying to save a man dangling above from an overpass.
A group of Good Samaritans in north Houston on Sunday gathered on a highway to help two deputies trying to save a man dangling above from an overpass. David Garcia/video screengrab

Shortly after 11 am. on Sunday, someone called 911 to report a man trying to jump off an overpass in north Houston onto Interstate 45.

When two deputies, identified by authorities as J. Leal and R. Cruz, arrived from the Harris County sheriff's office, the man was lying across the bridge's concrete retaining wall, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Something else was beginning to take place below.

A group of people had gathered, looking up towards the man, their arms outstretched to catch him in case he fell or jumped, according to ABC 13 in Houston.

Stuck in the traffic halted on the interstate, 19-year-old David Garcia filmed the unfolding drama on his cell phone, later sharing the video with local media.

"Oh my god, bro, no no bro, don't jump, no man, don't do that, don't do that dawg, don't do that," Garcia pleaded as he filmed.

The two deputies approached the man cautiously, deputy Thomas Gilliland told the Chronicle. One provided distraction by talking to him, the other moved close enough to grab him.

Gilliland said the deputies managed to pull the man back over the wall but he jumped up and ran back toward the edge, determined to jump.

"Save this man, save this man," Garcia yelled as he watched from his car. "No man, no man."

The deputies managed to pull the man back and handcuff him.

Garcia told Click 2 Houston he was amazed by the people who rushed to help the man from below. "They saw somebody needed help and wouldn't let him fall. They wouldn't," he said.

Deputy Leal injured his knee and back struggling with the man and was treated for the injuries Sunday afternoon, Gilliland told the Chronicle.

Ed Gonzalez, Harris County sheriff, praised the deputies in a tweet, calling the rescue "heroic work."

Gilliland told local media the would-be-jumper, a young man about 20 years old, was taken to the hospital for a mental health evaluation.

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