Army Vet Saves Man Lying on N.Y. Subway Tracks

Army Vet Saves Man Lying on N.Y. Subway Tracks

News Jan 25, 2013

He’s the next best thing to a guardian angel.

A brawny Army vet heroically hoisted a man out of the path of an oncoming subway train — risking his own life to pull the helpless stranger off the railbed.

Harlem cabdriver Isidore Branham, who is studying nursing, was at the 135th Street-Lenox Avenue station in Harlem on his way to work early yesterday.

He saw a drunken Timothy Moriarity, 57, lying on the tracks, law-enforcement sources said.

“This woman cried out, ‘Oh, my God, somebody fell in the tracks!’ ” Branham said. “My instincts just came alive. All the training kicked in. I thought, ‘I’m here. I can’t let this man die.’ ”

Branham, 38, sprinted to the end of the 2-3 platform and saw Moriarity lying between the tracks.

“We all started screaming because we saw the 2 train coming,” said Branham’s pal Twanna Jackson, 39, of Harlem.

Branham kept his cool, jumping onto the railbed to pull the much-larger Moriarity out of harm’s way.

“He was inside the railbed between the ties. I picked him up from his arms and dragged him across the rails,” he said. “Once I got to the platform, I picked him up from the waist. I wanted to do a fireman’s carry but there was no time. The train was coming.

“I grabbed him by his belt. I scooped him up and pushed him on the platform. I curled him and lifted him in front of my body. This guy was really heavy. It was a shock to my body, but I was strong enough.”

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Cops told him that the MTA clerk alerted the conductor that someone was on the tracks, giving the train time to slow down, he said. About 10 women on the platform yelled for him to get off the tracks, he said.

“Get out of there!” they yelled, he said. But he wouldn’t leave Moriarity. “I’m not letting this man die!” he said.

“I felt this man shouldn’t die this day, not while I knew I was capable. I was the man for the job. I used to work in transit. I’ve been on the tracks. I know how dangerous they are.

“About 45 seconds after I got him on the platform, the train passed by safely. I backed away when cops and EMS arrived.”

Jackson praised his quick work.

“I consider him a hero. That was a blessing that he was there at the time he was there,” she said.

Moriarity was breathing through a tube in the ICU at Harlem Hospital yesterday. He was unconscious and had a black eye.

Cops had an Upper East Side address for the victim, but the couple who lives there says he stayed with them for only a week several years ago. “I don’t think he has a place to live,” said the woman at the address, who grew up with Moriarity.

Branham, who served in the Army as a cook from 2010 to 2012, re-enlisted for the Army this year, he said, explaining:.

“I feel like its my responsibility to help my fellow man. You don’t need a cape to be a hero.”


Republished with permission of The New York Post

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