Suicides from the Golden Gate Bridge : LUSENET : San Francisco History : One Thread

I am looking for information on some of the earlier suicides from the Golden Gate Bridge. Harold Wobber was the first man, but that is all I know about him.

also I am looking for information on a supervisor CHris C who faked his suicide from the bridge

-- Bridget Prince (, June 18, 2002


How about a guy who jumped off the Golden Gate bridge and survived. He truly wanted to kill himself but couldn't. I met him. Nice guy. Let's see, that was approximately in the mid to late 80s but don't hold me to it. What an incredible SUPER STUD. He dove off the bridge, landed in the water and was surprised and disgusted that he was still alive and so he just swam to shore. Of course, it helped that he was a champion swimmer and in his early 20s. What the guy should have done was to write a book on it or seeing how he was immune to death from this jump, do it again as a publicity stunt with the confidence that could survive. I think he told me that he did it on impulse and that he hadn't planned it but he never told me why he did it

-- Harry Murphy (*), June 18, 2002.

Here's some starting places:

Suicide Statistics, Marin County (north end of the bridge): htm

Info from the Self-Inflicted Injuries tables:

A rather gossipy site:

Oh, wow. All about the ghosts in the bay (plus narrative on what happens after you jump, uh, successfully):

The San Francisco Public Library’s Koshland History Center has file dedicated to the statistics, but it’s not available on line. This link off their website looks really interesting, and not just for the topic you’re interested in. I could lose an afternoon there:

-- Rosa (, June 18, 2002.

My brother just jumped 3 weeks ago and they haven't found his body yet. I am looking for answers to that. Can you help?

-- amy Bernard (, February 22, 2003.

Unfortunately I do not have answers for anyone. Just hopes of obtaining some information regarding my fathers suicide (leap) from the G.G. Bridge which occured in June, 1981. I was the youngest of four children (I was six yrs. old, my brother was 8, next sister was 10, and the oldest of us four was another sister, age 12) he left behind. My mother did an excellent job in raising us and making us the people we are today. For that, and other reasons, I thank her and love her very much. Anyway, to this day I feel a gap, some kind of void in my life, and unless I finally investigate as to what actually occured that June evening (June 6, 1981, unsure of exact date) I fear the void will never be filled. I do not hate my father for what he did, but no matter what I tell myself, that strong feeling of abandonment is constantly present. I am at the very beginning of my research so I honestly have no idea on where to start. Any links/web-sites that anyone may know of, or any places (library, mueseum, etc,) you might think will help me, please forward the info to me. My E-mail: My fathers name: Roy Bruce Pavia I was told he did it to escape severe back pains he dealt with daily. If memory serves, I think I remember someone mentioning a witness to the jump, but I could be wrong. And I don't think the body was ever recovered. Well that's all I know as of now, but hopefully with the help and guidance of others I can fill the void, no matter how painful the facts might be, and move on with my life feeling not so incomplete. Thank you in advance for reviewing this document, and thank you for all info. produced because of this web- site. Sincerely, Tony Pavia P.S. If ever anyone needs to chat, or help getting through their G.G.Bridge Suicide Experiences, please feel free to E-mail me. Thank you and Goodbye.

-- Tony P. (, March 28, 2003.

in case u havent noticed, the current issue of the new yorker magazine has a story on this topic and the writer has done a lot of research, maybe could be of help. aside from that, we surely need to all focus on our "inner selves" before having any chance to find real peace in this world, no matter what our circumstances...take care, Buzz

-- robert bussewitz (, October 08, 2003.

I too have no info on any early jumpers. But I have been recently researching jumpers because my brother jumped of the early morning, approx 5:30am) of February 5, 2003. I am looking for information and witnesses. His body has not been found yet, but my family and I are still hoping to have this closure. I had no idea at the statistics of suicides. I have lived in Santa Rosa, CA all my life and never knew. My brother is deepl missed and was a pilar in his community of Petaluma, CA and in SF, where he worked as well. I am looking for answers and would like more info in the suicide barrier that is in the works. Thanks for your site. Sincerely, Amy R. Bernard In Loving Memory of Gary W. Bernard Jr. 1962-2003

-- Amy Bernard (, December 12, 2003.

I don't know if most of you know but a man named Paul Alarab was pulled from the Bay at 11:34am and another factoid: On December 14th 2001, fourteen year old Marissa Imrie, a petite and attractive straight-A student who had planned to become a psychiatrist, left her second period class at Santa Rosa High School took a hundred and fifty dollar taxi ride to the Golden Gate Bridge and jumped to her death. This was in the October 2003 issue of the New Yorker. One other thing strikes me. how could you be in High School at 14? She must've been a genius.

-- Bill Robbins (, May 23, 2004.

Imagine with me, by putting yourself in this story. One Saturday afternoon, you decide to go for a walk across the Golden Gate Bridge. You notice just ahead of you on the pedestrian walkway a lady on the other side of the four-foot guardrail facing the city, getting ready to leap off into the concrete cold waters of San Francisco bay. You see her swaying back and forth and counting 1,2,3. But she doesn’t quite have the courage to jump. You approach her cautiously, so that you don’t alarm her. She tells you all of her problems. The addictions to sin, and the guilt that came from hurting so many people. She feels lost, unloved, and sees no hope for the future. You listen for about an hour, but everything you say seem to make things worst. She counts one more time and jumps the 220-ft fall at 75 miles an hour to her immediate death. Once very two weeks someone like this lady jumps from the Golden Gate Bridge. So, far, about 1,200 people have been seen jumping off the Bridge since it was built in 1937, but officials stopped counting in 1995. As of 2003,only 26 survived the jump.

Question: So, are any of you crossing a bridge. Are you prepared to give someone hope? What will you say to persuade a presious soul from ending their life?

Question: Are you able to look at your own life and say, “This is a life that has victory, hope, and purpose?

One day You may come across someone sitting on a ledge of self destruction. It does not have to be a ledge such as on a bridge, but a ledge that leads to emotional, moral, and spiritual disaster.

There may be someone today , reading this sermon, that is on the ledge of uncertainity, carring a load of guilt, disappointment, and pain. Traveling a road with no direction in life.

In either case God wants to speak to your heart today.

In the Gospel we find the answer to all of our problems. Today we are going to look in the Bible at one of the many persuavive reasons for living.

The title of this sermon is “A life that wins”.

There is no better feeling than being a winner. Did you know that a life that is united to Christ is always a winner?

Today we are going to look at Romans 6:1-5, But before we can do that we need a little background on our text.

In Romans 5:20-21 Paul has described the Law being added, so that sin might increase. But where sin increases, grace increases all the more. Sin has reinged and brought death to all who are under the law. But now, grace is regning through the righteous life of Christ who brings eternal life to all those who believe.

Paul is very blunt: The law produces sin, so God give more grace. We are no longer under the reign of sin, but are now under the reign of Grace.

Question: Is Paul suggesting that a Christian is free to sin, so that Grace might increase?

You know Paul has been accused of promoting lawlessness from his Jewish friends.

In Romans 8:3 Paul say’s, “We are being slanderously reported and some claim that we say, ‘let us do evil that good may result’”

This brings us to our scripture reading and passage for today.

Romans 6:1

Paul addresses his accuser in Romans 6:1

“What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?”

What do you think friend, do you think God wants us to hurt ourselves, inorder that we receive more grace?

Romans 6:2

How does Paul answer his own question?

“God forbid!, By no means!; No, No!; Certanly not!; What a nasty thought!”


“We died to sin, how can we live in it any longer?”

Question: When did the believer die to sin?

Romans 6:3 “Or don’t you know (are you ignorant) that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?”

We died to sin at Baptism.

Paul connects our baptism to Christ death. Christ died in our place, taking on all of sins power in our behalf. At baptism we symbolically unite with Christ death by faith, dieing to our past sinful ways.

Baptism is making a public statement a reenactment if you will, of Christ death, burial, and resurrection. Baptism symbolizes what happens in our hearts by faith. We die to our past life of being under the enslavement of sin, buried beneath the watery grave and being raised up ready to live a new life by the Holy Spirit. Uniting with Christ by faith in baptism gives us the covering of His life, death, and resurrection that count as ours in the sight of God.

Question: What does it mean to die to sin?

Does it mean that sin has lost it attraction? Does it mean that the believer is now perfect? Does something miraculous happen at baptism that makes us dead to sin?

Testimony of two Baptisms:

1st Baptism: When my twin brother and I were about the age of 12 our pastor came to us and asked us about taking baptismal classes. We agreed and went through the lessons. In about a month we were baptized into Christ. Did sin loose it power in my life? We came home from church that Sabbath and went up stairs to change, got into an argument and started throwing punches at each other. My mom yelled up the stairs, you were just baptized, knocked it off!

Maybe I was young and unconverted.

2nd Baptism: At my second re-baptism I was expecting thing to be different. I was 21 years old and much more mature. This time I was hoping that the Holy Spirit would give me some kind of sign of true conversion. But no sign came!

Do you think I lived a sinless life after the second baptism? I assure that today I stand before you as a sinner who is saved by grace.

Paul uses such strong word as “to die sin” to show the great change that is to take place in the believer life. Sin is still around, but it no longer reigns in the believer’s life.

From my personal experience baptism was the turning point in my life. I decided to follow a new master and new way of living. My sinful past is still engraved in my memory, and bad habits that were learned before Christ, needed to be unlearned and replaced with the good. Baptism is starting over, being born again! As a new infant, I had to learn to walk again, but this time with Jesus.

Paul wants the Christian to know that their new life is not compatible with sinning. We are no longer slaves to Satan, but slaves to Christ! Being dead to sin does not mean “extinction” of sin! For as long as there is a devil there will be temptation to sin. Being dead to sin is to be “separated” from it’s dominating power.

Illustration of the Two Fields

There are two fields that are separated by a high rock wall. One of the fields is where Satan and sin reign, and the other is where Christ and righteousness reign. Every one of us are brought up in the field where Satan and sin rule. There is no way that it is humanly possible to jump the rock wall, and make it to the other side. When we make a decision by faith to give our hearts to God through the public statement of baptism; we are in essence saying to God “I want to be dead to my enslavement to sin, and I want to be set free from my bondage. God in His infinite mercy reaches down and pulls the believer out of Satan’s field and puts him or her in the adjacent field where Christ reigns. The believer is now in a new relationship with sin. A wall separates sin power from the believer, but even with the wall the believer still can hear Satan’s call. Out of habit of serving sin in the past, the believer sometimes turns and faces the wrong direction and trips and falls. Falling down doesn’t mean the believer changed masters, but just indicates that the believer’s old life needs to be reminded that it’s dead. We are no longer enslaved to the power of sin in Satan’s field.

Romans 6:11 “In the same way, count yourself dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.”

If we long to overcome sin, all we must do is count (reckon, realize), that we are dead to Satan’s call and move further away from the dividing rock wall until Satan’s voice becomes fainter.

Romans 6:4 “We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”

This verse gives us purpose, hope, and victory! The promise has been tested and it is sure. If You unite with Christ, you will walk in the newness of life.

Philippians 1:6 “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ.”

Philippians 2:13 “for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose.”

Friend, the Gospel has power! I was not changed from a sinner to saint at baptism. But I can say with confidence that Christ started a good work in me. I can say that I have been growing in grace. I can say that by beholding I have become changed.

I no longer fight with my brother, cuss like a sailor, enslaved to porn, disrespectful to my mother, and selfish with God’s money.

Romans 6:5 “If we have been united with Him like this in His death, we will certainly also be united with Him in his resurrection.”

“If” you unite with Christ, it is certain that God is going to do a wonderful transformation in your life, and family.

I have not arrived, nor am made perfect yet, but I press on. I do one thing, forgetting the things, which are behind, and stretching forward to the things, which are before me, I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

Friend, there is many sitting on the ledge of uncertainty. There may be some here today reading this sermon that are on a ledge that leads to emotional, moral and spiritual destruction. I ask you today to reconsider the power of the gospel. Look to the cross were Jesus died! Your sin has been laid to rest in the watery grave. Look to the tomb where Jesus does not lay! You have been resurrected with Him to live a new life of victory, hope, and of purpose. God is the business of healing and restoring lives.

With Glad Tidings, Eric Washburn

-- Eric Washburn (, May 28, 2004.

There's a piece in the SF Chronicle about how the Ironworker's are the ones who go to talk people down. It's over a year old.

S de C "There ain't no devil, only god when he's drunk" Tom Waits(?)

-- Satan De Cat (, June 15, 2004.

i think that anyone that jumps off a bridge is bloody stupid!!

-- Rohan (, December 01, 2004.



I used to be one of the crew who picked up the people who would jump off of the Golden Gate. I'm not quite sure why you would want to know about some of the people who jumped, unless they were related. I had that job for almost a decade. It used to be on my mind to find out about the people but that would have driven me mad. One might think it morbid for you to be looking for info about suicides. The fact is, many people jumped that we never knew about. I have a lot of different emotions going through me right now thinking about that time in my life. It used to get me very upset when people would come to where we were and try to get a glimpse of the people who jumped. Let them die in peace. Many died in my arms and I did what I could to help them pass peacefully. Since then I have learned to let it go. Maybe that is why I am responding to your question. Hopefully you will find the answer you are looking for so you too can let it go. People choose to take their lives in many ways and it affects the families of those people but it also affects the people, like me, who had to pick up what is left. I've had many years to ask why they did what they did but the only answer that made sense was... What am I going to do with this beautiful gift of life?

-- Former Rescuer (, January 10, 2005.

I was wondering if anyone has any information about a friend of mine that reportedly jumped off the Bay Bridge on Tuesday Feb. 1, 2005. I'm not sure what time of day it was, but there were witnesses. He appearently stopped his car (a volkswagen passat) in mid traffic, got out, and jumped. No one has found his body. From what I have read here, it doesn't seem likely that they will. I know the currents in the bay are really strong so his body probably drifted out to see. What bothers me is that I can't get any information from the local news sources about it. You would think a guy stopping his car in traffic on a bridge and jumping would make the news, but maybe it's just so common that no one reports it. If anyone has any information or ideas where I can get info on this I would really appreciate it.

-- Oscar Laguna (, February 03, 2005.

I pulled up this thread looking for information about an incident on the bridge, yesterday. All appearances are that it was a suicide as well. While I was stuck in traffic on the bridge, the news reported it as a police investigation...nothing more. My assuption is that they don't want to glorify these events for fear of perpetuating more.

What strikes me is the number of stories like yours where family, friends, and curious strangers who live without the answers as to why and what can be done to prevent suicide. So many untold stories leave with that person. If someone truely wishes to die, I doubt there is any way to stop them. However, the residue left behind is haunting.

I wish there was a way to have there stories told, questions answered, before they leave.

-- Kevin Rosa (, February 23, 2005.

JUST DO IT! Jump! hahaha. no one cares when your body rots at sea. so selfish and pitiful such an option brings.

-- nike doit (, February 25, 2005.

To all of you that have been left behind, there are no answers to suicide. The hardest part is letting go, if you heep looking for answers or to blame some one, you will never heal. Today I'm angery that my son choose to die rather than live but tomorrow( March 1st would have been his 43rd birthday)I will remember him with love and all the specail events in his life, shed lots of tears and thank God for giving me a son for the time we had him with us.

-- Amelia J. Bernard (, February 28, 2005.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ