MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – The day after Christmas started off as a typical day for Brady Lutton, who works in the Murfreesboro-Police-Fire Communications Center.
“And I was scrolling through Facebook and I had seen this group that I just joined before coming to work that was called the Firefighters Community and I had seen that a firefighter posted, former firefighter posted up in there that he was going through some issues, suffering some PTSD. ‘I feel like just giving up. I’ve saved so many, but don’t know how to save myself. Can’t sleep, eat, Lord knows the many things I’ve put my wife through. For what it’s worth I just want to go in peace. Tired of struggling daily, knowing if I make the choice to get the help I need, I lose everything else that I have left.’ So, I immediately sent him a friend request and sent him a message and started talking to him.”
Months earlier, Brady had become certified in crisis intervention, undergoing a work training course focus on strategies to help people going through a mental crisis like the suicidal man in the Facebook group.
Brady is also a volunteer firefighter and just celebrated 14 years of sobriety.
“The story that he was telling I could understand where he was coming from and I’m in college right now so one of my research papers that I do was PTSD on first responders,” said Brady.
With the help of his supervisor, Brady was able to get a list of people who shared the distraught man’s same name and started looking for corresponding addresses trying to narrow down where he lived.
Brady contacted police in different cities to investigate addresses, this while still messaging the distraught man plus answering 911 calls.
“We weren’t having any luck, every place that they would go out would be the wrong address or nobody’s heard of him, stuff like that. And it got down to the very last one and I sent him a message and asked him about the street. And he didn’t respond back and changed the subject on me and that’s when I knew I got this down,” said Brady.
That man was in Gulfport, Mississippi almost 500 miles away.
“He didn’t want police coming to his house. He told me that there was a fire department that was a couple of blocks from his house, and I got a hold of that fire department, spoke to the captain of that fire department and let him know what was going on and the gentleman agreed that he would walk down to the fire hall. So, he walked down to the fire hall. They got an ambulance down there and transported him to the hospital.”
“Brady is a hero because he definitely has a public servant’s heart. He is here to serve the public, his community. He is always dedicated and hard-working, really goes the extra mile for the ones that he serves, not only officers and the firefighters, the first responders that we deal with but also the community, the citizens and the public,” said Courtney Drake, Communications Training Coordinator.
As for the distraught man, he sent Brady a message the very next day.
“Brady, don’t stop doing what you do. People need you. I don’t know where things would have went last night if I hadn’t went to the room or group I did. Keep going, don’t you give up. You’re good at what you do,” the message said.
So, we honor Murfreesboro Communications Specialist II Brady Lutton as our News 2 Gives Back Hometown Hero for the month of March — presented by TriStar Health — for helping a distraught man almost five hundred miles away to get the lifesaving help he needed.
If you or someone you know needs help — call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.