Heroic teenager from Sherburn-in-Elmet wins Yorkshire Young Achievers Award after talking man down from bridge
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Owen Jeffers, 19, was celebrating his girlfriend’s birthday in York over the summer when he noticed a man behaving unusually on the Ouse Bridge.
Concerned for his safety, the inspiring teenager encouraged the man to come down while surreptitiously signalling for the help of passing police officers.
His heroic efforts were recognised at the prestigious Yorkshire Young Achievers Awards on Thursday (November 16) night, when he picked up the prize for ‘Unsung Hero’ in a glitzy ceremony at the Leeds United Centenary Pavilion at Elland Road.
Owen explained: "We were walking along the bridge and we were halfway over when I noticed this guy in his twenties.
"He stepped onto the edge and was walking to the middle. Everyone was confused. I’m a bit of a lightweight, but I quickly sobered up, so I approached him and asked if he was alright.
"I ended up taking his hand. I was a bit concerned he might pull me in with him. But a police van drove past and I signalled for them. Thankfully, two officers starting walking towards us and a few minutes later I told them what had happened.
"After it was all over, we couldn’t believe it. It was insane.”
Owen, a student of TV and Film at Sheffield Hallam University, was born in Leeds but later moved to Sherburn-in-Elmet. Having been a performer for most of his life, he has aspirations of becoming an actor and a filmmaker.
The teenager had no idea he had won the award until the moment it was announced. He said: “It was such an honour to even be nominated, let alone win. I was really nervous, but it was amazing.”