Blizzards Save Lives!
For all the negative press you hear about snowstorms shutting down cities, trapping people in their homes and just being an overall nuisance, you’d never guess that SNOW SAVES LIVES! Have you heard about the guy in Manhattan who attempted suicide?
(Courtesy of New York Post)
The snowstorm that mangled New York saved the life of one Manhattan man.
A troubled Hell’s Kitchen resident jumped from his ninth-floor apartment window yesterday — but survived because he landed atop a mountain of trash bags that had been piling up since the Dec. 26 blizzard, cops said.
“Maybe it was lucky we had this snow and they hadn’t cleared the garbage,” said Katharina Capatos, the aunt of the victim, Vangelis “Angelo” Kapatos.
It was about the only good news from a torturous postblizzard week marked by a lackluster response to the storm, which included a catastrophic breakdown of snow-plowing that kept ambulances from getting patients to hospitals.
Kapatos, 26, of 325 W. 45th St., jumped just after noon, landing on his back on garbage bags heaped high outside the 10-story building, authorities said.
He left no note and no one was home when he fell.
Kapatos was taken to Bellevue Hospital in critical condition, and was in surgery hours later.
His aunt, who spells her last name differently, said he’d been released from Bellevue’s psych ward last Wednesday after spending about a month there following a nervous breakdown.
“I think he’s lonely. I think he has manic depression,” Capatos said.
She also said a dispute with his landlord — who she said wants to evict him from the $572-a-month, rent-stabilized unit that technically belongs to his parents — had been weighing on her nephew.
His next eviction hearing in Housing Court had been set for tomorrow.
“I want to live, but what is going to happen to me?” Capatos, 64, recalled him asking her recently.
Kapatos’ lawyer, Charles Small, received a frantic voicemail and e-mail from him Friday asking him to “reassure me that everything will be well.”
“I told him that there’s nothing to worry about, that his landlord has no case,” Small said he responded by e-mail.
But “I have no idea” if he got the message, Small said.
Neighbors described Kapatos, who moved from Greece with his family when he was 3, as quiet and withdrawn.
“He kept to himself . . . always had his headphones on,” said one building resident who asked not to be identified.
Kapatos’ miraculous survival was the silver lining in a storm cloud of bad news stemming from the blizzard.
“This was the perfect storm — excessive amounts of garbage between the Christmas and New Year holidays and nearly 2½ feet of snow,” said Councilman Vincent Ignizio (R-SI).