New Japan star Harry Smith, the son of the legendary “British Bulldog” Davey Boy Smith, made news last week by pulling a woman off a bridge in Calgary, Alberta, Canada right before she could jump and commit suicide.
“I was on my way to watch a pay per view, and I saw someone sitting on the side of the bridge,” said Smith. “It was a woman and she was crying and looked distraught. Initially, I thought she was arguing with her boyfriend. When I hopped over the barricade, I could see that it was not her boyfriend, and it was another stranger, like myself, who was trying to help her.”
Smith tried to speak with the woman, but the more he spoke, the further she inched her way off the bridge.
“I grabbed her arm, and she tried to hold me off,” said Smith. “The other gentleman helped me grab her arm and I was able to anchor her down, but she was trying to fight me and most of her body was over the bridge.”
After a struggle, Smith and the other man were able to pull the woman to safety on the cement. Smith then tried to hold her on the ground to prevent any second thoughts of jumping. He was then informed that the woman was potentially carrying a gun, so Smith held her in place until the police arrived.
“I’m glad I was the one to be there,” said Smith. “My years of grappling helped me pull her up, and I was in the right place in the right time. A life is a life, and I’m very glad that I could be of service to her.”
The 32-year-old Smith noted that he has lost too many friends in his own life, from his own family and friends in the wrestling business.
“I was very close with Chris Benoit, and I wish I could have helped him,” said Smith. “I never knew that he had any issues because he was so secretive. I’m glad that this incident in Calgary is being publicized, because it shows people that they should seek help instead of bundling it inside to the point where they’re ready to jump off a bridge. No one should ever feel alone. Mental illness does exist and it is very real, and there is help out there for people.”
Smith will be wrestling in New Japan’s World Tag League tournament in November and December with Lance Hoyt. Although the pair are three-time IWGP heavyweight tag team champions, they have yet to claim the World Tag League tourney. Smith will also appear at this Saturday’s Big Event convention in New York, as well as wrestle Saturday night in East Haven, Connecticut for Wrestle Jam.
“I met Antonio Inoki years ago at the WWE Hall Of Fame in 2010,” said Smith. “I was asking him a lot about techniques and different wrestling moves and situations. The one thing he told me was, ‘The most important thing is your spirit,’ and he gave me a wink. It really stuck with me for the rest of my life, and I think it helped with this situation.”
In addition to iconic wrestling figures, tragic death is often synonomous with Smith’s family, which includes an uncle in the late Owen Hart. Smith has lost his father, cousins, uncles, and friends to unforeseen deaths. Yet, faced with the chance to save someone, Smith acted.
“I’m grateful that I was in the right place at the right time,” said Smith. “Life is precious, and I’m glad she has a second chance.”