Armed with kind words and a 12-pack of Coors Light, two beer delivery men said they were in the right place at the right time to save a suicidal man’s life.
Kwame Anderson told Fox9 that he and his coworker, Jason, were driving over a bridge in St. Paul, Minnesota, to deliver beer for the company DriveThru Beverage when they noticed a man standing at the ledge of the Earl Street Bridge.
At first, Jason said he couldn’t believe what he was seeing that Wednesday afternoon.
“My first impression is this is not happening right now,” he told KSTP. “Is this fake?”
When they saw the man, Anderson got out of the truck and immediately tried to help, even though he wasn’t sure what he could do in the moment, he told The Twin Cities Pioneer-Press. So Anderson said he channeled Denzel Washington in the movie “Inside Man,” in which the actor played a negotiator.
Anderson learned the man grew up in Chicago, he told the Pioneer-Press, and tried to bond over the fact that they both grew up “in the hood.” But when he asked the suicidal man if he needed food or water to step down from the bridge, he responded that he didn’t.
Anderson continued to coax the man to step away from the ledge for nearly an hour, according to Fox9. Jason said you could “feel tension in the air” as the suicidal man, who is black, remained near the edge of the bridge, which goes over an interstate highway.
The man “was intimidated by white cops,” he told Fox9. “I said my helper is an extremely intelligent guy, I said I think we can talk this guy off the ledge.”
Eventually, the pair managed to talk the man off the ledge — using a 12-pack of Coors Light. According to the Pioneer-Press, Anderson said, “do you want to get a drink with me and talk about what’s going on?”
“I left and I grabbed a case of beer,” Anderson recalled in an interview with KSTP. “I came back and said if you get down from there, this is yours.”
St. Paul police spokesman Mike Ernster told the Pioneer-Press that this is another example of the power of beer.
“Beer has been bringing people together for a long, long time,” Ernster said. “Today, it brought people together in a life-saving way.”
Anderson posted a video of the incident on Facebook, which shows him holding the case of beer and first responders treating the man.
Once he came off the bridge, the man was rushed to the hospital, meaning the pair never got to share a drink like Anderson had promised, the Pioneer-Press reported.
So Anderson, a comedian, told Fox9 that he hopes to invite the man to one of his comedy shows and give him a good laugh and a beer.