MANCHESTER, NH – Officers responded to a call for a 53-year-old man who was reported missing July 29 from a West Side address.
The man’s sister told police her brother was despondent and had been battling mental illness. She drove him to Elliot Hospital on July 27, but he had signed himself out of the hospital on July 28 at 8:30 a.m. and was supposed to be returning to Vermont, where he resides with his partner.
On August 1 Manchester Police Officer Beau Bernard was working an extra detail at the New Hampshire Fisher Cats game conducting pedestrian and traffic control duties at the intersection of Granite and South Commercial streets at approximately 6:50 p.m. when a motorist alerted him that there was a man who appeared to be “getting ready to jump” off of the Granite Street Bridge, who turned out to be the man reported missing two days earlier.
Officer Bernard moved quickly to the area without running, as to not alarm the man and made contact with him. He engaged the man in a brief conversation as he closed the gap between them. Officer Bernard then grabbed the man’s arm and, following a brief struggled, pulled him to safety.
Officer Bernard, a 13-year police department veteran who works in the patrol division, was commended for his quick actions and his ability to pull the man off of the railing most likely prevented him from harming himself.
Officer Thomas Ouellette arrived a short time later and assisted Officer Bernard as put the man into protective custody and then transported him to a hospital for proper medical treatment.