Girl Survives 30-Ft. Fall, Caught by Neighbor

Steven St. Bernard, Local Hero, Saves 7-Year-Old Keyla McCree
Keyla McCree falling; Steven St. Bernard (inset)

updated 07/17/2012 at 07:45 AM EDT

originally published 07/17/2012 08:30AM

First, the good news: She's safe. And the city has a brand new hero.

A 7-year old girl either fell or jumped from a third-story window in New York's Coney Island Monday afternoon – and was rescued thanks to a city bus driver who just happened to be in the right place at the right time on the sidewalk below.

Witnesses saw the child dancing on top of an apartment unit's air-conditioning unit before the fall, which was captured on video (see below), reports CBS New York.

"I heard somebody banging on the door, stating that my daughter was outside on the air conditioner, but I had no idea what was going on because I had my son," the child's mother, Saleema McCree, told the station, explaining too that her daughter Keyla is autistic.



McCree thought Keyla was asleep in her room at the time of the accident. Fortunately, bus driver Steven St. Bernard had just finished his shift and, acting quickly, caught Keyla in his arms.

"Basically she was dancing and … I was just praying that I would get there, and that if she [fell] that I would catch her," St. Bernard said.

He also told news radio station 1010 WINS: "She was shocked, because she moaned a little bit."

Police arrived, and Keyla and her rescuer were taken to Coney Island Hospital.

The child sustained no injuries, while St. Bernard tore a tendon in his hand. Showing it to reporters, he said, smiling, "It's all good."

Know a hero? Send suggestions to HEROESAMONGUS@PEOPLEMAG.COM. For more inspiring stories, read the latest issue of PEOPLE magazine.

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