Faribault bridge-jump survivor gets her closure

We’re apparently never going to know the name of the persons who saved the life of Jennifer Green when she jumped from a bridge over Faribault’s Straight River in 1990. They want to remain anonymous, a report today says.

Green, whose story was written by Gail Rosenblum in Sunday’s Star Tribune, has been searching for the person who came to her aid after she jumped.

The Faribault Daily News had first carried the story of her search in 2012, then renewed the search a month ago with a second article:

Green has always been aware of how much she owes to the person who called 911 that night and would like the opportunity to tell them so.

“That person saved my life,” Green said. “As I remember, it’s a very, very small town. February was a very cold month. I remember someone telling me it was a bitterly cold night — for someone to be walking and see that and actually get involved.”

Neither the Faribault Police Department nor the Owatonna Dispatch has the records of 911 calls from 1990.

According to a Daily News article from Feb. 8, 1990, rescue workers responded to the 14th Street bridge at 3:38 p.m. on a report of a woman who had jumped off the bridge onto the frozen Straight River. Green, who was 20 at the time, fell 25 feet and landed six feet from open water. She was transported to District One Hospital with possible fractures in both feet. She was in stable condition the following morning.

Green said it seemed like forever before anyone came to her aid, but that it couldn’t have been more than about 15 minutes. Because she ran away, she doesn’t think she had a jacket.
Over the years, Green has searched and searched and doesn’t want to search anymore. She’s looking for closure.

It turns out that by the time Rosenblum’s column was printed, Green had already found her saviors, Rosenblum reports today.

Just after my column went to press, Green got a phone call from Faribault Daily News reporter Camey Thibodeau.

“She was just like, ‘Jennifer, I have a letter here. It’s from the people who saved your life that day.’

“I said, ‘Read it!’ ” Green recounted with a laugh. Thibodeau did.

The letter was three paragraphs typed, with no return name or address. The writers said that Thibodeau’s article was “recently brought to our attention.”

“They said they were on the bridge that day and they appreciated Green’s gratitude,” Thibodeau said.

Thibodeau knows there’s always the possibility that the senders are making this up, “but I like to think it’s legitimate.”

They didn’t ask for any kind of reward and they signed their names, simply, Two Good Samaritans.

Green is from the Chicago area. She had been admitted to the Wilson Center in Faribault in 1989 for treatment of bipolar disorder and eating disorder.