Firefighter Kaim Rosado, New London (Conn.) Fire Department

It’s not every day firefighters find themselves clinging to bridges 150 feet above an icy river on a cold December morning, fighting with a person who is hell bent on plunging to an almost certain death.

 “The momentum pulled us both back through the hole and on to the deck of the bridge,” Rosado said. “I was tired and I just swung right in with him.”

The suicidal subject, although uninjured, was taken into custody and turned over to medical personnel standing by with an ambulance, and was transported for observation and evaluation.

Rosado, who says he is 5-foot, 5-inches tall, didn’t have any size advantage on the young man who was thin but strong. It was sheer determination and strategy that safely concluded the call.

"It just kind of happened,” Rosado said. “This isn’t anything you can have an SOG for. …We just all worked together very well and kept trying different stuff.”

For Rosado, the save was “a highlight” of his career so far. Never before had he been so intimately involved in saving someone’s life.

For his efforts, Rosado was honored by the Connecticut State Police and by the New London Fire Department, receiving his department’s highest award for saving a life. He was also given a citation by Connecticut State Senator Andrea Stillman.

“We didn’t want our efforts to be in vain,” he said, noting that the police deserve credit for their role in saving the man as well. “When I went over the fence, to the other side, we didn’t really have a Plan B, that was Plan B,” Rosado said. “I’m just glad it all worked out well.”