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Viral campaign reunites man who attempted suicide and stranger who talked him down

Jonny Benjamin’s viral campaign to find the man who convinced him not to take his own life was a success.
Jan 30th 2014, 10:45 AM 19,273 19

MENTAL HEALTH CAMPAIGNER Jonny Benjamin has finally found the man who prevented him from jumping off a bridge six years ago.

Benjamin was in a state of distress on London’s Waterloo Bridge when a young man spotted him, stopped to talk, and offered to buy him a coffee.

Eager to find and thank the man who inspired his recovery, Jonny launched a viral campaign to find him earlier this month.

The ‘Find Mike’ campaign took the internet by storm and guess what? It paid off. He found him.

Jonny and Neil – that’s ‘Mike’ – were reunited within a fortnight and the campaigner has wasted no time in thanking everyone who helped out.

Source: @MrJonnyBenjamin

“I was so pleased to see how well Jonny was doing, I had thought about him over the years and had always hoped he was ok” Neil told Rethink Mental Illness, the charity who captured their reunion on film.

Source: Rethink Mental Illness

“I can honestly say, hand on heart that Jonny is one of the nicest people I have ever met, he’s a great bloke and it’s brilliant to see him smiling again. We’ll definitely stay in touch.”

Benjamin said:

I feel like I’ve won the lottery – I’m totally elated. It means the world to me to finally have the opportunity to say thank you. That day on the bridge my life hit rock bottom, but meeting Neil, I felt so happy, it couldn’t be more of a contrast. It’s as though I’ve come full circle and that chapter of my life has now closed. He’s such a warm, genuine person – everyone should have a friend like Neil.

Jonny’s now working on a documentary about his search for Neil and you can keep up with all the latest developments on Rethink’s Facebook Page.

Helplines:

  • Samaritans 1850 60 90 90 or email jo@samaritans.org
  • Teen-Line Ireland 1800 833 634
  • Console 1800 201 890
  • Aware 1890 303 302
  • Pieta House 01 601 0000 or email mary@pieta.ie
  • Childline 1800 66 66 66

Man who attempted suicide launches viral campaign to find stranger who gave him hope>

Samaritans received more than 10,000 calls over Christmas>

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Sarah Doran

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