Video helps man find the stranger who saved him from suicide

KTVL-TV (Medford), Feb. 4, 2014

Jonny Benjamin

Jonny Benjamin

Imagine you’re at the end of your rope leaning over a bridge about to commit suicide. Until a complete stranger stops and literally pulls you back from the edge.

That’s the story of one man. And he made it his mission to find this stranger and thank him for saving his life.

An emotional reunion — two strangers brought together by fate.

It was a day in January 2008 when Jonny Benjamin stood on London’s Waterloo Bridge contemplating suicide.

The 20-year-old had just been diagnosed with schizophrenia and couldn’t stop the voices in his head.

“I was approached by a total stranger that stopped to talk to me and offered to buy me a coffee,” he said.

The young man on his way to work, stopped, and talked Jonny down from the bridge. But as Jonny recovered, he never forgot the man who saved his life.

So, he ┬ámade a plea to find him. Not knowing the name of the good samaritan, Jonny called his campaign “Finding Mike” and he made a video appeal for help.

Jonny’s appeal video: “Finding Mike”

“Perhaps you remember a conversation with a friend or a colleague at the time, or maybe you were even on the bridge and you remember some detail about him. Whatever it is, please do get in touch and let us know,” he said in the video.

He also took to television and social media. The movement soon went viral with millions sharing his story around the world.

The plea paid off when a woman saw the story on Facebook and knew it was her fiance, Neil Laybourn.

It was a pub in London where Jonny finally found the man who changed his life forever.

Now Jonny’s mission is to pay it forward.

“We found him!”: Emotional reunion with “Mike” (real name: Neil)

Find more about Jonny at Rethink.org