Daughter, 5, Lives After Father Holding Her Jumps Onto Subway Tracks in the Bronx

If you are in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or reach out to the Crisis Text Line by texting 'Home' to 741741

What to Know

  • A man jumped onto the 4 train tracks in the Bronx Monday morning while holding his 5-year-old daughter, according to police
  • The man is dead; the girl was taken to a hospital with minor injuries after somehow surviving and being helped by two men
  • If you're in crisis, call National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255 or reach out to Crisis Text Line by texting 'Home' to 741741

A man holding his 5-year-old daughter jumped onto subway tracks in the Bronx during Monday's morning rush, killing himself but thankfully only leaving the child with minor injuries, police said. 

The man had the girl cradled in one arm when he jumped in front of the train as it rounded a curve and slowed at the Kingsbridge Road station just before 8 a.m., police said. The man, identified as Fernando Balbuena, was killed by the Manhattan-bound train — but the girl lived, getting trapped underneath.

With the help of two strangers, the little girl crawled her way to safety. One of the good Samaritans said the girl was calling out for her father the whole time.

"Papa, Papa, Papa, that's it. She didn't say anything else," said Antonio Love, who went down onto the tracks with another man to help the child.

She was rushed to the hospital afterward, but after only minor injuries were found the girl was brought home by her godfather to her mother, who expressed gratitude to those who helped her daughter.

"My baby is in perfect condition, thank God ... to the angels who protected her," Niurka Caraballo said in Spanish hours after the ordeal.

The two men who helped the little girl had minor injuries and were taken to a hospital, fire officials said. Cellphone video from a witness showed the two bystanders leap into action, pulling the girl from the tracks and handing her back up the platform to safety. 

Those who knew Balbuena said he was not suicidal as far as they could tell, and saw him as a good father.

"This is a tragedy and our thoughts are with the family members as well as with our train operator — this is a traumatic event for everyone involved," MTA spokesman Shams Tarek said in a statement.

Later Monday night, NYPD officers brought toys and food for the 5-year-old as she rests at home with her family, recovering from a traumatic day in which she saw her father killed.

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