London

Video-blogger's search for stranger who saved his life

  • 14 January 2014
  • From the section London
Jonny Benjamin Image copyright (C) British Broadcasting Corporation
Image caption Jonny Benjamin wants to find the stranger who stopped him from jumping from Waterloo bridge

A video-blogger who was stopped by a stranger from jumping into a river six years ago has launched a campaign to find the man who saved his life.

Jonny Benjamin, 26, was on a ledge of Waterloo Bridge in January 2008 after being diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, when the man intervened.

Now as an ambassador of Rethink Mental Illness charity he has helped many.

"The empathy, belief and determination that passerby showed me, gave me hope," Mr Benjamin said launching the appeal.

He will return to the bridge later to hand out flyers to people in search of the man who saved him.

'Act of kindness'

Mr Benjamin said he was feeling distressed and hopeless after the diagnosis and was on the verge of jumping off the bridge when a stranger, 'Mike', approached him and offered to buy him coffee and talk.

He said: "I can't remember much about how he looked but he seemed to be a few years older than me and was on his way to work.

"He looked like someone who was leading a normal life, which was something I really wanted at that point. He told me he'd felt the same way as me in the past, but had got better.

"His act of kindness changed my outlook on life and I have thought about him ever since. If it wasn't for him, I probably wouldn't be here today."

The video blogger, who has presented a BBC Three documentary on mental illnesses, is also making a documentary film about his search for the Good Samaritan.

Schizoaffective disorder affects about 1 in 200 people and those suffering have very high or very low moods, and might lose touch with reality, the charity said.

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