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Suicidal Man Rescued From Merrimack River

Lowell National Historical Park

National Park News

On the afternoon of August 9th, ranger Matt Collins heard a radio call from Lowell PD reporting that someone had just jumped off the Bridge Street bridge into the Merrimack River. When he arrived at the bridge, he could see a man swimming towards the bank of the Concord River about 200 yards downstream. He climbed a 12-foot-high iron fence, headed down a riverside walkway toward the man, and found him clinging to a tree in the river. Collins threw a lifejacket with a lifeline attached to it to the man and told him to hold onto it and the tree until other rescuers could arrive on scene. A Lowell PD officer threw a life ring to the man, who was able to secure it with his other arm. Collins and the officer then pulled the man to shore, and, with the assistance of a second city officer, got him up onto the river walk. He was taken to a local hospital. An eyewitness told a Lowell officer that she told the man not to jump, but that the man had told her that he didn’t want to live. The rescue was complicated by recent heavy rains and a river flow of over 22,000 cubic feet per second.


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