Spokane Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer was driving home from work on Thursday, when he made eye contact with a man sitting on the railing of the Monroe Street Bridge.
“We had a gentleman that was on the bridge,” Schaeffer recalled. “He explained he was in dire straits, lost his employment, lost his home, didn’t have any money, and didn’t have any way to access help.” Minutes later, Schaeffer discovered it was the man’s second time sitting on the railing that day. The man, who is homeless, was upset with how his belongings were handled by a city clean-up crew. Spokane Police officers, Schaeffer, and other first-responders were able to convince the man to come off the railing and helped transport his belongings to a nearby homeless center.
“Part of his last resort was to end his life or find a way to solve his problems. He wasn’t able to see past his initial problems and to what the future could be,” Schaeffer said.