Madison city employee and homeless man help save woman - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Madison city employee and homeless man speak about saving a woman's life

Courtesy: Madison Police Courtesy: Madison Police

MADISON (WKOW) -- A Madison city employee and homeless man share one memory that they'll never forget. Sadie Villegas and James Lofton stopped a woman from jumping off Monona Terrace's rooftop Monday.

"I think we're all connected forever," Villegas says about Lofton and the woman they helped save.

The incident began when Villegas says she met with the woman at her Community Development Authority Office. "You could just tell she was not in a good place. She was very distraught about having to move at the end of the month," she says.

Villegas says she knew something wasn't right, and decided to follow the out of the Madison Municipal Building and up to the Monona Terrace rooftop. She says the woman went for the ledge. "You could just tell what her intention was and I wasn't gunna let that happen so I grabbed her and I just started to pull on her and I started screaming for help and...James showed up out of no where."

James Lofton, who is homeless, says he heard the calls for help and didn't hesitate to jump in and help keep the woman from going over the rail. "That's how I was raised, ya know. The way I was raised is you see somebody that needs help, you help them," he says.

Because of their efforts, the woman was taken to a safe place once police arrived. Villegas and Lofton say they met with the woman Wednesday. "She was very thankful, very grateful for what James and I had both done," Villegas says.

The two have been nominated for the Madison Police Department's Life Saving Awards. Villegas says that she hopes through this connection, the three of them can continue to support each other in the future.


MADISON (WKOW) -- A City of Madison employee and homeless man will receive Madison Police Department Life Saving Awards after saving a woman who was reportedly trying to jump from the Monona Terrace rooftop ramp Monday.

The city employee told police the woman had come into the Community Development Authority office upset about the possibility of her family being evicted. The employee said she sensed something was wrong because the woman kept saying, "I'll leave, I'll just go away."

Police say the city worker followed her out of the Madison Municipal building. They say she followed the woman up a Monona Terrace rooftop ramp, when she saw the woman move to a rail, clutch it with her hands, put a foot up, and was about to jump.

The city worker told police she had to move quickly, so she yelled for help and bear hugged the woman from behind. A 46-year-old homeless man, named James, then came to help the two.

James told police he saw the woman on the rail, trying to jump and could also see the other woman, right behind the first, desperately hanging on. He said he ran to both and helped the city employee pull the woman to safety.

When officers arrived on scene, they placed the woman in a chair, trying to calm her down. Officers then put the woman into a wheelchair to take her to a safe place.

Powered by Frankly