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2015 jumper list
updated: 07.01.15
we post everything we know.
if you have any factual news, updates, or additions,
please bring it to our attention.
(our comments follow)
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06.30.15: jumper, 7:49pm, male, lived/died?
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
06.30.15,, Skyway Bridge: Crews on top and below the bridge working to recover yet another jumper.

06.30.15, Marina K. S., facebook, Another one? Just passed now 8:27pm

06.30.15, Craig V. D. W., facebook, Jumper tonight from NY double Gainer off the Crown Vic and the Skyway bridge. God bless !

06.30.15, Cynthia M., st petersburg, I live in Isla Del Mar and have been seeing flashing Lights for about an hour.

06.30.15, Jennifer T., Tampa, FL., (9:10pm), Was driving over the bridge Northbound around 9:10pm and saw a silver Crown Victoria pulled over in the Southbound lanes. There were two cops with lights flashing behind the car, and one cop looking in the windows of the crown vic with a flashlight. As I was returning Southbound around 9:50, the vehicle was still there, as well as one police car. The right lane was completely blocked off. From the glance I got, it appeared to have a New York license plate. My heart sunk as soon as I saw the car, I hope this was just a stranded car and not a jumper :(

06.30.15, Ty T., Bradenton, Fl., We were driving over the skyway today and a bunch of police were looking down off the side and a helicopter was watching closely. No other details.  

06.30.15, facebook, Christine F., So sad! My heart goes out to their family!!! My husband and I drove by about 10:00 tonight and saw the officers looking over the bridge.

07.01.15, Frank M., Sarasota, I saw the guy get out of the car, walk around the back and used his left hand to get his legs over the side. He went over the side feet first. It took several seconds for me to realize what I had just witnessed. I pulled over and called 911.

07.01.15, Anonymous, Manatee county, Believe it or not I witnessed this individual stop his vehicle and walk to the back of his car, climb over the side and push off. I was and still am in shock about seeing this. I also was probably the first caller to dial 911 for this incident. Video of a family member crossing the bridge hours later. This will forever change my life. Very sad and tragic. My thoughts are with his family. (video? what?)

any more info is welcome. 
06.30.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, SUICIDE ATTEMPT, SKYWAY  BG, 1949, 0009, 4h20m
07.01.15, Anonymous, St. Pete., regarding the jumper on the 30th, This kind of thing is so selfish, when i was there (cant say who i am job reasons) there was a family fishing, if you are thinking of this do not, you are ruining other peoples lives... They can not "un see" what happened. If you are thinking about this get help, dont bring other people into this.
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06.26.15: jumper, 12:55pm, male, hit water, died, body found same day
Charles Wireman, 69
thank you, jumpnews reporters:

06.26.15, Tracy B., Clearwater, (1:45pm, male), Driving back from Bradenton two female police officers were talking to a male (about 40) and as I was approaching the top of the bridge he just through his leg over and jumped. So sad.

06.26.15, Timothy G., facebook, Scanner feed from today at 1:27pm. At mark 7:20 confirmation of body being taken back to O'Neils. (thank you. we edited out the dead air from the original 8m39s.)
  2m35s - 64kbps • download/play

06.26.15,, Skyway Bridge: Rescue units responding to reports of a subject that jumped from NB lanes of center span. Watch for emergency units ‪#moveover ---- Update 1:20PM: Subject confirmed deceased. ----- Update 2:40PM: Correction from earlier post: Subject that jumped from the bridge was a male.
06.26.15, Kathy F., received second hand, just came over the sunshine skyway to a man who jumped. trooper just pulled up on the scene as we passed by the empty vehicle.... read in the police blog the man 70 years jumped at 12:55 we passed at 12:58. i have goosebumps from head to toe and pray for his family.
06.26.15, Josie, Bradenton, Florida,(1:00pm, male, hit water, died, body found same day), I was driving to Tampa to pick up my husband from the airport. I was on the Sunshine Skyway Bridge northbound. Almost at the top of the bridge I see a police officers vehicle parked with flashing lights so I moved to the left. I did not see any police officers out of the vehicle. About 9 car lengths ahead I saw a blue SUV parked. As I was getting closer to it I saw a man in a blue shirt run out of the driver's seat and run in front of his vehicle. As I was passing him I saw him put his leg on the ledge and jump off the side of the bridge. I was horrified. I had cars all behind me and did not know what to do and just started crying. I would have called 911 but I already knew there was a police officer there. I pray for this man and his family. I keep seeing his image in my head and just start to cry. later: I am confused with some of the other comments. I did not see any police officers out of their cars before I saw the man jump out of his car and jump off the side of the bridge. I was confused why the police car was so far away from the car normally they pull right behind the vehicle. All I saw was the man get out of his car and jump. (this is exactly why we feel we can call out the suicide practitioner as being somewhat selfish. against your will, this man performed a horror show exit you will never forget. had he the option to seek end of life assistance, you would not be writing about what you went through. as for why the other reports vary as compared to yours, it's common that people see and remember things differently. there is not a lot of time to be paying attention to your skyway driving, much less throw in witnessing someone stepping over the wall, poof, gone. you have people, cars, speed, bridge, sky, water, birds, police activity, and a person ending their own life. it's a lot to take in all at once. the mind processes such an overload of input differently, with different people remembering the same series of events in random order, with real and/or "remembered" particulars to the story. that's why many of our reports paint several different pictures of the same event. one reason why the police park their cruisers so far upstream from the event epicenter, is so oncoming traffic can be given ample opportunity to safely slow down, move over, and not become an additional element to the scene. also, ambulances, tow trucks, and fire equipment often come along and those vehicles usually need to be closer to the action than the patrol car. although, once someone jumps, we also tend to wonder why there are still so many first responders up on the deck, when all the action has dropped below it. thank you for your input and we truly hope you cope with what you saw.)
06.27.15, Josie, Bradenton, Florida, Thank you so much. I had nightmares all night. I feel so sad for him and his family.
06.26.15, Natasha N., facebook, My husband, son and father in law were fishing under the bridge today and the man landed feet away from our boat. My husband was able to keep our 5 yr. old from seeing the body. I found your site and appreciate you posting eyewitness accounts/comments as I have been searching all day for the mans name or any info and your site was all I could find. It has been extremely unsettling for me. (things sure do change fast when a good day of fishing turns into that. thank you, we hope your family copes with the ordeal.)
06.26.15, Natasha N., facebook, Thank you. I wouldn't be able to deal with that, I wasn't even on the boat with them and I'm beside myself. Honestly, In my Opinion, it's better that he died instantly. I can't imagine my son seeing my husband try to save a mangled man on the deck of our boat. If you happen to find his name would you please share with me? (any and all info will be posted here. you should probably avoid reading this story. Geoff G. describes what could have been for your men.)
06.27.15, BCW, Lakeland, My husband and father in law were fishing under the skyway and witnessed and recovered the man's body and held him until law enforcement came and took him. Very sad situation but thankful myself or my 10 year old was not on the boat.
06.27.15, Michael H., facebook, Charles Wireman was the man that jumped off the bridge yesterday. He was a former Hillsborough County Public School science teacher. He had retired many years ago. He had a stroke a few years ago. He really didn't have much nearby family. Depression is a really dark spot. He was a Vietnam Vet who earned two Purple Hearts. He was a great guy. Sad to see him do this. (we received a mention of his name this morning, but nothing about him. tragic how life can diminish to such a point. sorry you lost someone you knew.)
any more info is welcome.
06.26.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, SUICIDE ATTEMPT, SKYWAY  BG, 1254, 1757, 5h03m
06.28.15, Marilyn (sister), Charles Wireman 6-26-2015, Age 69, Love is stronger than death.

06.29.15, Ashley S., crossville, tn., I had known Charles many years as a Vietnam Vet, father, teacher, and all around great man. He had lived a long life with its obstacles like a stoke 5 years ago. I will forever be SAD that he did not reach out to friends and family instead of taking his own life. Suicide was not the answer. Good-bye Charles.
06.12.15: jumper, 7:30pm, female, hit water, died, body found same day
Toni L. Bennett, 58,
thank you, jumpnews reporters:

06.12.15, Marina K. S., facebook, Sadly it looks like another jumper. passed scene at about 740pm


06.12.15, IONTB,, Skyway Bridge: Watch for emergency vehicles responding to the bridge. Reports of a woman that may have jumped from the northbound lanes. Update 8:05PM: Skyway Bridge: Body of victim recovered at the base of the bridge. Slow traffic atop the bridge. FHP with vehicle. Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office responding. later: Woman about 50yo witnessed by many ppl. FD swimmer entered the water as she was up against the rocks.

06.13.15, khol v., ste.pete, fl., (06.12.15, female), I was on my way home from work about 7:30pm and passed a small blue, looked like a KIA soal on right side of the north bound way I watched her exit her vehicle and walk around the front of her vehicle as I was passing I looked in my rear view mirror and watched her jump off the side of the bridge. I didn't know who to call so I called my girlfriend and told her what I seen and asked her to call authorities. The image is stuck in my head. Very intense (we often get reports such as yours, detailing the surreal nature of witnessing someone make their last living move. it could replay in your head for quite some time. we do hope you cope with what you saw.) a comment: 06.13.15, anon, Toni was my sister and any information would be appreciated. I'm so sorry you had to witness that. (sorry you lost your sister. if we get any more information, we will post it here.)

06.17.15, keith B., St Petersburg, (06.12.15, 06time: 7:30pm), I was driving by an saw a woman look over the side of the bridge like see was just waiting. I thought her car may have broken down. Then in my rear view mirror I saw her put one leg over then the next and push off. It happen so quickly. I wish I would have/could have done anything. I just called 911. I still see her jumping every day. Its sad. (it is sad that you had to see something you can not unsee.)

any more info is welcome.

06.12.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, SUICIDE ATTEMPT, SKYWAY  BG, 1924, 0013, 4h49m
06.15.15,, Suicide: A woman jumped from the center span of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, Friday, June 12, 2015, Time: 7:50 PM
Victim: (deceased - next of kin notified): Toni L. Bennett, DOB: 01/12/1957, Bradenton, FL.
Recovered vehicle: 2009 Blue Nissan Cube SUV
Details: On June 12, 2015 just before 7:30 pm, a motorist spotted a female jump from the center span of the bridge. Deputies recovered an abandoned vehicle at the top of the bridge and a deceased female was recovered from the waters underneath the bridge.
U.S. Coast Guard, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, St Pete Fire Rescue Marine Unit and the Florida Highway Patrol assisted in this incident.
06.12.15,, Woman jumps from Sunshine Skyway, dies in apparent suicide, authorities say.
A passing motorist saw the woman jump from the center span of the bridge shortly before 7:30 p.m., according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office. Deputies recovered an abandoned vehicle at the top of the span and a woman's body from the waters below the bridge.
Deputies were working Friday night to identify the woman and notify her family.

06.13.15,, Woman who jumped off Sunshine Skyway identified.
A woman who jumped to her death Friday off the Sunshine Skyway Bridge was identified as Toni L. Bennett, 58, of Bradenton, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said Saturday.
A passing motorist saw the woman jump from the center span of the bridge shortly before 7:30 p.m., according to the Sheriff's Office. Deputies recovered an abandoned 2009 Nissan Cube SUV at the top of the span and a woman's body from the waters below the bridge.
The Coast Guard, Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission, the St. Petersburg Fire Rescue marine unit and the Florida Highway Patrol assisted in the incident. An investigation is ongoing.

06.15.15,, comment from article: C. McC., This is so sad, my girlfriend and I were on our way to Rays vs White Sox at the tropic field. We were passing over the bridge just minutes after she jumped. We made the joke about the cube being pulled over for someone to jump but it was a stupid comment to make. Now I have this gut wrenching feeling in my stomach and I feel awful. Prayers for this family. I wish I could have been there at the time she got out. I would have tried to stop her.

06.15.15,, comment from article: J. B., So sad when people think this is the answer. They have no idea what this does to their family...
obituary  Toni L. Bennett
06.17.15, Luke, bradenton, fl., Toni was a wonderful mother and person. She was prescribed Clonazepam 2mg three days before her death. Clonazepam is called the world's dangerous drug. rest in peace my love. (we are truly sorry you lost her. the list of negative side effects of this drug are too numerous to list here, thoughts of suicide being one of the many. the fact that headmeds are the go-to "cure" for so many people, it's no wonder we are a nation of over medicated, mentally ill drug abusers. it is our opinion that if the doctors prescribing these headmeds would be made responsible for these negative outcomes, we would generally be a healthier country mentally. don't get us started on the drugging of children with this shit. yeah, but let's keep the battle going over that horror drug marijuana.)

06.18.15, anonymous, st. Petersburg, Police and toxicology/autopsy reports will answer many questions. Hopefully she left a note to help the family understand what drove her to this. I'm a nurse and usually clonazepam at that dose would not cause suicidal thoughts that quickly. I feel so sad for her and hope the family will get all the answers they deserve. (the dose does seem light and perhaps played little to nothing in her decision to jump, however, we stand behind our anti-headmed rant. we have witnessed far too much harm with them, both on this website and in real life. we too hope the family gets all their answers and can cope with what happened. thank-you for your input.)

06.21.15, Anon, Clearwater, Florida, I was very touched by the story of Toni Bennett. Does anyone know if there was an obituary posted? I would really like to extend my condolences to the family. Her story really saddened me. Thank you. (we have yet to find an obituary. if one turns up, we will post it here.)

06.21.15, anonymous, Georgia, I'm deeply saddened by this tragedy and offer the family my condolences. I do have to say that I've been on Clonazepam for 15 years for anxiety and seizures. It has saved my life and it's not a "headmed"/ psychotropic drug. It's a benzodiazepine. It is far from the world's most dangerous drug. Prescribed and taken right is offers help for a host of conditions. I don't think the medication played a big part in this woman's tragic decision. (of course these headmeds work for some people, but we still stand with our opinion they are doled out far too often to people that could do better another way. we are glad they work for you.)

06.25.15, Lucas, bradenton, My mother Toni Bennett, I love you and miss you everyday. I forgive you.
05.21.15: save, 6:25pm, male
thank you, jumpnews reporter:

05.21.15, Bill E., Riverview, Fl., (6:25pm), HCSO responding to FHP call for assistance at top of bridge. White male on edge. later: 6:33pm, Jumper in Fhp custody. All units called off.

any more info is welcome.
05.15.15: skywalk?, male
thank you, jumpnews reporter:

05.17.15, anon, (05.15.15, male, no phones, was stopped from jumping), This was a family member of mine. He was on the Skywalk friday morning thinking about jumping. Someone called law enforcement after seeing him walk back and forth from his vehicle to the Skywalk several times. Fhp's quick response to the scene, gave them a chance to talk him down and get him some help. Thanks FHP

any more info is welcome.
04.26.15: possible jumper
04.26.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, SUICIDE ATTEMPT, SKYWAY BG, 0514, 0549, 0h35m

any more info is welcome. 
03.31.15: save, 8:48am, male
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
03.31.15, natasha b., bradenton, fl., (9:30am, male), I was driving northbound on the Skyway Bridge for work this morning at exactly 9:30am I passed by several sheriffs and local cop cars and his brown truck, who steered traffic away. I saw a white male with grey shirt on hanging off the bridge, teo hands holding on, one leg over guard rail and entire body over the guardrail. I dont know if he jumped. I hope not. Very upsetting day.

03.31.15, Marina K. S., facebook, Did someone jump? Police looking over edge with a truck parked there. Hope not.

any more info is welcome.
03.31.15,, Suicidal man talked down off Sunshine Skyway Bridge by officers
MANATEE -- A suicidal person was talked down from the ledge of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge this morning by the Florida Highway Patrol and the St. Petersburg Police Department's Crisis Unit.
According to FHP Trooper Kenneth Watson, the man was on the ledge advising that he wanted to jump. The man had been driving a bronze-colored 2011 Ford truck.
FHP troopers were on the scene Tuesday, and additional help was on the way from the United States Coast Guard and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission with boats in case the subject jumped.
FHP troopers received a call about a suicidal person at 8:48 a.m. Tuesday and a trooper was on the scene within minutes, according to Watson. They managed to secure the man and left at 9:58 a.m.
"I can tell you that all units are following the ambulance to Manatee Memorial Hospital," said Watson.
Watson couldn't say whether the subject was under the influence of some narcotic.
"There's obviously been a catastrophic event that has occurred that has brought him to his point," Watson said. "Our job is to get him off and then we'll hand him to the medical professionals." (thanks jason, bradenton)

03.31.15, facebook/iontb, Averted Skyway Suicide This Morning. Great job to all the agencies involved. On March 31, 2015 at 8:40 AM, the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) was patrolling northbound I-275 near mile marker 9 on the Skyway Bridge. A FHP trooper observed a Ford pick-up truck stopped on top of the bridge span and a distraught white male sitting nearby on the ledge of the bridge. The white male began shouting at the trooper advising the trooper to back away. In turn, the trooper requested emergency back up and began attempting to establish a rapport with the subject. Additional Florida Highway Patrol Troopers, Florida Wildlife Commission Officers (FWC), Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and the Saint Petersburg Police Department responded to the scene. The US Coast Guard along with the FWC Marine Unit responded and stood by at the base of the bridge in the water. During the course of engaging in a conversation with the subject, emergency personnel were able to physically pull the subject to safety and detain him. The subject was taken to Manatee Memorial Hospital for evaluation and will be Baker Acted upon release.
03.29.15: possible jumper
thank you, jumpnews reporter:
03.29.15, anon, Sarasota, Possible jumper- drove over (southbound) at about 9:00 p.m.- police officer with lights on at the top--- behind a vacant 4-door black car.

any more info is welcome. 
02.28.15: possible jumper, male
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
03.01.15, Bill E., Riverview, (02.28.15, 5:00pm, male), On scanner, heard a dispatch to a deputy to respond to Skyway Re: call from Sarasota, person left and threatened to jump. Male driving a black car, believed to be a Maxima.

03.01.15, mandie, st. Petersburg, FL., (03.01.15, 12:08am), Possible jumper. 3 FHP vehicles, fire and ems. Black 4 door, newer car at the top of the bridge. Anyone have any info?

seems these two reports could be linked. any more info is welcome. 
02.28.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, ASSIST OTHER AGENCY, SKYWAY  BG,  2345, 0033, 0h48m
02.25.15: possible fog bird sighting
02.25.15, facebook/iontb, Skyway Bridge: Unconfirmed report of a possible jumper NB lanes north of the main bridge. Heavy fog still in area.
Update: All units went available. Passing motorist who was not from the area called in the report. It is unfounded and may have been a bird in the fog that caused the concern.
(obviously, this passing motorist is not familiar with the dreaded florida fog bird.)

any more info is welcome.
02.17.15: save, 11:30pm, male
thank you, jumpnews reporter:
02.17.15, Keith M., Gulfport, FL., (11:30pm, male, didn't jump, taken away), Driving home from Sarasota, saw an abandoned white car with 2 FHP vehicles at top of Northbound lane, iontb is reporting that troopers were able to secure the potential jumper.

any more info is welcome.
02.17.15, facebook/iontb, Skyway Bridge: Rescue crews responding to bridge with ground/marine units. Investigating reports of a possible suicidal person.
Update 11:37PM: Skyway bridge: FHP Trooper was able to secure the individual atop the bridge. Crews began to respond about 11:13PM after a call received regarding a white car stopped at the top of the bridge in the right lane. Additional information reported a male laying on the railing of the bridge with his leg hanging over. FHP responded and apparently found the subject back in his vehicle. Trooper was able to safely secure the subject.
02.15.15: save, 5:00pm
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
02.15.15, mel, seminole, fl., (5:00pm), Not sure what happened but red truck was stopped at top of bridge in southbound ln on side by water. Police at top and then saw ambulance and fire truck on their way to scene.

02.16.15, Seymour B., st. pete, (02.15.15, 5:00pm, didn't jump, taken away), PD4 stopped jumper, patient was taken to hospital by st. pete fire and rescue, 3 days of observation. Sunstar also responded but were late and driving badly as usual. (i know i could drive an ambulance better than some of these grandpa-like drivers they have.)

02.16.15, Bill E., Riverview, Fl., (02.15.15, 5:00pm), Listened after seeing grid 723s. No marine units dispatched. Heard EMS talking about bringing a patient up using the elevator. Are there elevators in the towers? But it was not a jumper.

any more info is welcome.
02.07.15: jumper, 1:48pm, male, hit water, died, body found same day
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
02.07.15, facebook/iontb, Skyway Bridge: Rescue crews arriving to what appears another suicide. Reports of a boat below with victim. Watch for emergency vehicles!
Update 2:15PM: Skyway Bridge: Right lane of I-275 southbound blocked atop the bridge. Numerous emergency vehicles present.
Update 2:20PM: Another unfortunate and tragic suicide from atop the bridge. Hillsborough Co Sheriff's Office to investigate. Body being brought to shore by St. Pete Fire Rescue.

02.07.15, Krista, st. pete, (3:20pm, male, didn't jump, taken away), I took pictures of a guy in the back of a pinellas county sheriff car on the apex of the bridge. There was also a trooper as well as an empty Bradleys AC repair truck stopped at the top. Glad he chose life. Traffic was at a 5mph pace. (not sure what you saw at that time. maybe it was a witness to the jump.)

02.07.15, LB, St Petersburg, (1:48pm, male, hit water, died, body found), Was in my boat on our way away from the Skyway when we saw a truck stop at the top of the bridge and the guy jumped. We watched him summersault all the way to water. Went over to him and he was expired. Called 911 and Coast Guard fire rescue showed up and took him away.

screenshot from the video, "Top 6 Creepiest Websites".

02.07.15, Will, Longwood, FL., (2:00pm), Followed FFs/several police vehicles that all came upon a white van used by a air conditioning company-van was empty and officers/FFs were looking over the side and others were roping off the area with yellow tape.

any more info is welcome. 
02.07.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, DECEASED PERSON, SKYWAY BG, 1405, 1927, 5h22m
01.29.15: opinion article - Ruth: Suicide prevention nets logical addition to Sunshine Skyway.
01.29.15,, Daniel Ruth, Times Columnist,
It is one of the oldest public safety axioms: That if doing X, Y or Z will save but only one life, just one, then whatever the proposal, it is still worth the cost and effort to implement.
But apparently that idealistic notion does not apply when aesthetics take precedence over public safety in making it more difficult for people to take their lives by jumping from the Sunshine Skyway.
Each year approximately eight troubled people leap from the Skyway to their deaths 197 feet below. The roadway ranks No. 4 in the nation for bridge suicides. According to the website, since 1954 when the first span opened, 234 people have used it to kill themselves. So far in 2015 one person has chosen the bridge as their last resort.
These aren't just dispassionate statistics. Chances are, most of us have had our lives touched by the suicide of a friend, family member or co-worker and are left to endlessly wonder what might have been if only the victim had been stopped in time, given a second chance at the life they were about to throw away.
Two years ago federal transportation funding became available to provide money to install bridge safety nets to capture potential suicides. The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, currently undergoing a renovation, will now include nets. The George Washington Bridge in Seattle has installed a suicide prevention net. But not the Sunshine Skyway.
Florida Department of Transportation spokeswoman Kristin Carson told the Tampa Bay Times' Rachel Crosby the agency is "watching and assessing" what other states are doing. It's just a silly idea, but wouldn't it be refreshing if other states were looking at what Florida was pro-actively doing to save lives? Just one?
A study done several years ago on suicide prevention netting on the Skyway concluded the webbing might actually cause a suicidal person to bounce back onto the roadway into oncoming traffic. And the same study raised questions a suicide prevention net would detract from the Skyway's elegant architectural design.
But the technology has improved. And after all, if the Golden Gate Bridge, one of the nation's most beautiful and truly iconic spans, can accommodate an antisuicide net, why can't the Sunshine Skyway?
Over the years there have been a small number of suicidal people who, incredibly, have survived the jump off the Skyway. There at least 36 known rare survivors of the jump who sustained massive injuries. Invariably many of these people have noted that almost immediately upon stepping off the bridge the thought occurred to them that what they had just done was a really, really bad idea.
It is true the Sunshine Skyway has six crisis hotline phones along its span. And that's a very good thing.
There is no question the installation of a net might not save every person bound and determined to take their lives. But for others, the safety net holds out the promise that what begins as a really, really bad idea need not be a fatal choice, but rather a rescue from their demons. And isn't that one life vastly more important than aesthetics? (comments follow the article. we don't want to be redundant, repetitive, recurrent, and repeat ourselves, but can someone in charge look at the ESR device and maybe tell us why it's not worth a study? they study the mating habits of snails, yet we can't pony up a couple bucks to stop skyway jumpers? bullshit.)
01.23.15: article - New funding, technology could prompt suicide barrier for Skyway.
01.23.15,, By Rachel Crosby, Times Staff Writer
Each year, an average of eight people fall to their deaths from the Sunshine Skyway bridge, which soars up to 197 feet above Tampa Bay. That statistic makes it the deadliest so-called "suicide bridge" east of the Mississippi River.
Already this year, a person has committed suicide from the bridge.
But what if a barrier — such as a wide net in the belly of the bridge — had been in place?
The nation's deadliest suicide bridge, California's Golden Gate, is preparing to install such a net, thanks to newly available federal funds to pay for suicide barriers.
But no such plans are in the works for the Skyway.
"Are we looking at a netting or barrier system at this time?" said Kristin Carson, a spokeswoman with the Florida Department of Transportation. "We are watching and assessing what other states are doing."
Fifteen years ago, Carson said, a study on installing a Skyway suicide barrier was conducted, and the idea was rejected. Engineers questioned whether a net would fling jumpers back onto the bridge and into traffic, and there were concerns about it ensnaring trash and wildlife. Questions were also raised about how a net or barrier would affect the bridge's iconic appearance.
But technology has advanced, Carson said, so another study would be required to make a decision.
About two years ago, President Obama signed Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century into law. Among its provisions, the transportation initiative made federal funds available for bridge safety nets.
It's the primary source of funding for the Golden Gate's $76 million installation, which will begin this fall and take about two years to complete.
"We consider it absolutely key in making this project move forward," said Dana Fehler, Golden Gate Bridge spokeswoman. About $49 million of the project cost is coming from the federal government, and the rest is being paid by California mental health grants and the bridge district.
"Those within the suicide-prevention field were ecstatic, if not somewhat frustrated that it's taken so long," said William M. Schmitz Jr., American Association of Suicidology president.
"There's just so much evidence to substantiate the fact that these things save lives," he said of suicide barriers.
"The Sunshine bridge is gorgeous. But I think there's ways to make it safer without greatly detracting from the aesthetics."
Fehler acknowledged aesthetics too, adding that the Golden Gate kept the bridge's beauty in mind when planning the barrier.
"If you're driving or a pedestrian or a cyclist, you'll never know it's there," she said. "It's very low profile."
But the Golden Gate is just more than a mile and a half long, compared to the Skyway's nearly 4-mile stretch. The San Francisco bridge also has no notable incline, while the Skyway rises to a crest and comes down again, making the logistics of a barrier different and potentially more costly.
Seattle's George Washington Memorial Bridge, the nation's second-deadliest for suicides, installed an 8-foot suicide-prevention fence in 2011. The $5 million project has reduced suicides, said Seattle police Detective Drew Fowler. But it's not a perfect solution.
"If someone's, really, really, really determined, they can still get over the fence," Fowler said. "It just makes it very difficult."
San Diego's Coronado Bridge ranks third in the U.S. for suicides, but like the Skyway, it does not have physical barriers in place.
The Skyway relies on 15 cameras that scan different parts of the bridge at all times, linking the feed directly to the traffic management center in Tampa.
The cameras were recently upgraded, but fewer highway patrol deputies are available to respond to any trouble they may detect.
Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Steve Gaskins said officers used to monitor the bridge at all times, but no longer.
"We only miss a couple hours a day, and that's a funding issue," Gaskins said. "The current schedule has been consistent for at least three years."
The Skyway once was on the cutting edge of suicide prevention, installing six crisis phones on the bridge in 1999. Tampa's Crisis Center fields calls from those phones and offers suicide-prevention services.
"Tools like call boxes and suicide barriers serve as a last line of defense, but they are not the most effective deterrent to suicide," said Kenneth Gibson, Crisis Center spokesman. "We encourage anyone who is having thoughts of suicide to talk to someone about their feelings."
Gibson said those seeking confidential help can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-8255.
"The Skyway has been an issue for a long time," Gaskins said. "I'm not aware of any changes right now, whatsoever."
(comments follow the article. we have been touting the ESR device for quite some time now, yet all we hear about are nets and fences. while we feel nothing would please us more than for this site to be rendered obsolete, we do not understand why the ESR is not at least studied. anyone considering suicide is strongly urged to utilize our help page. more information about the golden gate bridge and it's pending net installation can be found here.)  
01.10.15: possible something, 1:54am
01.10.15, Hillsborough Sheriff,  SKYWAY BG, 0154, 0459, 3h05m

any more info is welcome. 
01.02.15: jumper, 8:23am, male, hit water, died, body found same day
Joey Evan Schlosberg, 44
thank you, jumpnews reporters:
01.02.15, Tom, St. Petersburg, FL., (8:22am, male), 40ish year old male jumped. Bystanders and SPPD called FD. FD still responding. later: 44 year old male. Tan pants and dress shirt. Fire boat still enroute to body in water.

01.02.15, Dave, Bradenton, Fl., (8:40am), Visual. Empty red Accord at top of bridge. Police looking over edge, but too foggy for visual confirmation.

01.02.15, facebook/iontb, Skyway Bridge: Subject jumped from top of bridge. @stpetepd on scene. Marine units enroute. Drive carefully still foggy on bridge. later: Update 8:45AM. Skyway Bridge: Watch for multiple emergency vehicles atop the NB lanes. Marine units battling fog to locate body of witnessed jumper. 

01.02.15, Bill E., Riverview, (9:25am), HCSO dispatched to skyway, notified by FHP of a jumper. Grid 723s. All typical jumper units dispatched.

01.03.15, unknown, (male, body found), While out boating yesterday we found his body around 3:30

any more info is welcome.
01.02.15,, GRID 723S, MEDICAL, R11, D5, PD1, FB11, USCG, FFWC, E11, T11, MCFD (acronyms) 

01.02.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, MISSING PERSONS - ADULT ENDANGERED, SKYWAY  BG, 0923, 1500, 5h37m
01.02.15, Hillsborough Sheriff, DECEASED PERSON, SKYWAY  BG, 1544, 2345, 8h01m

01.05.15,, Bradenton man jumps from Skyway Bridge, Victim: Joey Schlosberg, DOB: 11/14/1970, [address withheld], Bradenton, Details: On January 2, 2015 at 9:23 am Joey Schlosberg parked his vehicle in the westbound emergency lane of the Sunshine Skyway bridge and then jumped over the side. Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office marine unit recovered the deceased man.  (we believe the sheriff's office has the time off by one hour, as we were getting reports before 9am.)
01.02.15,, St. Pete police confirms Skyway jumper
A St. Petersburg Police Department officer witnessed a person jump from the Sunshine Skyway bridge at 8:23 a.m. Friday, according to St. Petersburg spokesman Mike Puetz.
Puetz said the officer was driving over the bridge when he spotted the individual jumping off the bridge. The person had parked at the top of the bridge.
Witnesses say the jumper was on the northbound side of the bridge. Puetz was unable to say which lanes of the bridge were closed but did confirm that someone jumped from the bridge. The Hillsborough County sheriff's office responded to the scene.
Check back to for more on this developing story.
obituary • guestbook

in memoriam
Joey Evan Schlosberg  Phoebe Jonchuck
01.02.15, Rory. S., The jumper story about the 44 year old I would appreciate it if you took it down. Its about my uncle. Thanks. (we are sorry for your loss, but why should we remove this post? your uncle did not end his life privately at home. he put on a public horror show that created a massive traffic jam during a foggy morning. it was a newsworthy event lasting several hours, involving perhaps thousands of people using the bridge, and many responders directly involved in his last final act. that's why it was also reported here. did you ask them to remove their report? again, we are truly sorry for your loss.)

01.04.15, donna, tampa, fl., your comment to a grieving family member was wrong. i understand your right to post and the incident may have disrupted some drivers. but think of the family he is leaving behind. i think you should have put yourself in their shoes before responding. his children may google this when they get older is that what you would want them to read. (are we to blame for the sorrow the family now endures? now it's our fault? are we to hold back the truth of his public display of self inflicted death, in order to shield people from the facts? what about the newspaper? should we silence them from ever printing anything that may hurt the feelings of anyone that reads their news? we understand your concerns, but the person you should contact about them has made it impossible for you to do so by his own accord. when his children or anyone else searches for information on the events of that day, they will find them here. anyone that does not want this info, is welcome to stay away from this site. anyone that wishes for their jump news to not be posted on this site, is more than welcome to not jump off the bridge and perhaps find help or at least a more private method to take themselves out.)
01.04.15, donna, tampa, fl., like i said you have a right to report news worthy events along with real reports. but real reports do not use words like horror show. real reporters have compassion for others. obviously he felt he had no other choice. yes we are supposed to have more concern for his family they are the ones left to deal with the grief he left behind. we are human beings. having compassion is one of the things that separates us from animals along with opposable thumbs which u are using to type your garbage. (a real life horror show is exactly what jumpers display to those that witness them slipping over the bridge edge. [read what kim writes below.] it does not get much more real than that. perhaps if real reporters used real life words and real life truth to describe real life events, maybe there would be more trust of real reporters. do you actually want a world dominated by political correctness? don't we already have enough whiners screaming outrage about everything offending them? we animals tried typing our garbage with our thumbs, but found these index finger things to be much more betterer.) yo donna, some guy from jersey wants to say hello:

01.05.15, Jace (that is my real name), NYC, email: NFW, Just want to comment to Donna from Tampa regarding Joey Schlosberg. Will you allow that? I see your comment restrictions. I just wanted to thank her compassionate words for a total stranger. Is that okay? I'm not gonna waste my time or the space allowable to remark regarding your horrendous and uncompassionate remarks. I leave you with only one thought. If this was one of your family members, your child, a brother a sister or even a cousin would you be commenting the same way. I'm an expert at slamming back but I'm not going to stoop to your level. I see its a one way street on this site anyway. (why wouldn't we allow your comment? apparently you found our hidden comment restrictions. they are so well hidden, even we can't find what doesn't exist. your opinions have been duly noted and added to our massive 'do not care' list. mind you, we did lose a close cousin to a bridge jump. in his case, an oncoming semi-truck broke his fall. he took himself out, to hell with the family. we chat it up elsewhere on this site, but we are dead certain you will spend zero time looking or caring. "but still", right? you are free to waste as much jacetime as you want. it's early in the year and we have ample space for you to bloviate to your heart's content. if you write enough of your higher level slammery, we'll give you your very own jacepage, because that's what new friends do for each other. you can even post some soothing and politically correct 'hallmark card' worthy compassion while you're at it. don't be shy. say what you want to say. we'll post anything you want with none of those crazy restrictions we've never had. come on, expert, show us what you gots. not sure why you simply dream up our non-existent rules, but this has been a two-way street since 1998, so get to stoopin'. hello? jacey boy? expert?)

01.06.15, Blair, Trout Creek, Canada - Rory, Donna: People who are listed here on this site made the decision themselves (with exception of one man who was forced at gunpoint in 1981) to end their life jumping from either the existing or previous Skyway Bridge, including Joey Schlosberg. This was the place they chose to spend the last minutes of their lives.
Instead of getting angry and lambasting Phil for an unbiased listing of the event here, it could instead be a lasting, permanent memorial to the person from various family members. I have seen this done for some of the jumper entries, and I believe it is in good taste, and it also acknowledges the concern of "what will kids think when they look at this years from now to read about an aunt, uncle or parent who ended their life at the SSB". Will they see a bunch of hating people with bitter comments on the entry, or instead read about family members stating how great the person was, and how much they will be missed?
Maybe the most important lasting legacy for the people who have jumped from the SSB and died, is it could possibly prevent even one other person from doing the same if they visit this site and realize how much surviving friends and family are hurt by someone's decision to jump. (thanks for the kind words. many do come here to offer their own kind words about the person in their life that did indeed jump from the bridge, instead of ranting about this site, condemning those that run it, insisting we censor the event, and generally filling their loved one's site entry with hate and ugliness. we live in a world where political correctness rules the day. these hypocrites often get into a fierce, politically incorrect mode, in order to force others into their version of a politically correct mode of thinking. people will go to battle because they do not agree with your opinions, by lashing out with hate, vitriol, and usually name calling. the hypocrisy is both incredulous and hilarious. for example.)

01.06.15, Kim, Port Charlotte, FL., This is in reply to "Donna". I happened to be driving on the bridge at the exact moment Joey jumped. We saw his car door hanging wide open for the next driver on that foggy day to run into and cause maybe another fatality. Watching him jump has deeply traumatized me, so I can relate to the "horror" description used. So unless you have ever witnessed someone committing suicide, do not judge how someone reports the story. (thanks, kim. we hope you cope with what you were dealt. that had to be very surreal.)

we 'tweet': 01.02.15: man jumps off the skyway. perhaps not a happy new year after all.
a response:
01.11.15: @skywayjumpers you can go f**k yourself. that man was related to me you piece of shit. you don't deserve to life after a comment like that.
we reply: 01.14.15: thanks for your continued support.
(then for some reason, we were blocked. sad face emoticon!)

05.12.15, raeann p., he was my brother, I loved him very much, but he had a lot of problems, he will be missed! (we are sorry for your loss.)

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