Cumberland Police Officer Matthew Merriman has received a Meritorious Service Award for saving the life of a woman considering suicide.

The woman was sitting on the railing of the Interstate 95 overpass on Blackstrap Road July 3 when Merriman arrived about 4:45 a.m. At one point, as he was talking to the woman, she stood up on the ledge of the bridge without holding on. Merriman quickly pulled her back over the railing to safety, according to Police Chief Chip Rumsey, and took care of her until Cumberland Rescue arrived and transported her to a hospital for evaluation.

“The speed and ease with which (Merriman) switched from crisis management mode to concerned caregiver was truly impressive and heartwarming to see,” Rumsey said.

The department’s Meritorious Service Award honors a member “for a highly unusual accomplishment under adverse conditions with some degree of hazard to the life of the member, unit or another person,” according to the chief.



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