Hero, Tomas Jaunzems
Being a firefighter, one might wonder whether what Jaunzems’ training is for this event, and if the scene of the firefighter catches jumper, is one he’s experienced or done before.
According to Jaunzems, his heroic act was all-new to him.
“It was the first time I have done this,” Jaunzems told the staff of website, Bored Panda. “We haven’t been practicing this.”
Even though the “firefighter catches jumper” scene wasn’t one Jaunzems had ever participated in before, that doesn’t mean he hadn’t performed any shockingly heroic acts before. Having been part of the firefighting and rescue team for five years at this time, he told Bored Panda, “It is nearly impossible to tell you what the most difficult thing was during that day because every day in firefighters’ lives is different [and] challenging. We just do the thing we do the best: help people!”
According to Jaunzems, he decided to be part of the State Fire and Rescue Service of Latvia because of his desire to be his “country’s patriot.”
After the heroic act where this firefighter catches jumper, Jaunzems was honored with an award given by Latvia’s Minister of the Interior, Rihards Kozlovskis.
The Public Response to the Firefighter Hero
Given that the video has gone viral and Jaunzems has become an international hero, many people have had a chance to react to the “firefighter catches jumper” video and the hero behind it.
One user who saw the video on Facebook said, “I swear fire fighters DO NOT get the recognition they deserve…amazing!!!!! SALUTE.”
Another user who mistook the jumper for a man said, “My heart missed a beat watching but amazing well done, what a star and hope young lad gets the help he needs.”
Yet another person called Jaunzems “Super Man,” saying, “That is a super feat. he is probably the only man that has ever done that in the whole wide world.”
Some people, considering the pain of the woman who had attempted suicide commented, “Suicide does not end the pain, you just pass it to someone else.”
And there were words of hope and humor from one user saying, “I hope she gets the help she needs and that firefighter finds a good chiropractor.”
Although some people commenting on the video posted Twitter whether someone who wants to commit suicide should be stopped, user Keri Lynn Courtwright had some words of wisdom from an interview she’d seen of another person who’d lived after a suicide attempt. Courtwright said, “So someone interviewed a man who tried to jump from a bridge to commit suicide but ended up living. He said that as soon as his hand left the railing, he instantly regretted it and was grateful that he lived. Most people who survive have said they felt the same way. So just because in that moment in time they were making that decision does not mean that they really truly wanted to die and be gone forever.”