Holtville alum says it was God’s will to save womanPublished 6:39pm Friday, January 17, 2014
Some call it being in the right place at the right time.
Some call it heroic.
Gulf Shores police officer and 2008 Holtville alum Kyle Lucas calls it “God’s will.”
On Oct. 17, 2013, Lucas and his partner James Johnston were on patrol near the W.C. Holmes Bridge over the Intercoastal Waterway when a call came out that a woman appeared to be about to jump off the bridge.
Johnston and Lucas, who was just a month into his job as a patrol officer withthe Gulf Shores Police Department, drove up behind the woman who didn’t seem to hear the officers’ vehicle approach.
Patrol commander Lt. Mike Hill arrived and began talking with the woman who was threatening to jump from the bridge.
While Hill and the woman talked, Johnston and Lucas crept up behind the woman as swiftly and silently as they could.
The woman spread her arms like a bird about to take flight while she stood on the ledge of the bridge.
No sooner had she outstretched her arms than Lucas and Johnston quickly grabbed her and pulled her back over the railing of the bridge and to safety.
“I think it was God’s will that we were so close,” Lucas said. “She was about to make a terrible long-term decision to address a short-term problem. But she got the help she needed and turned it all around to the good.”
Less than a year into his rookie year as a patrol officer, Lucas and his veteran partner were cited with the Lifesaver Award by the Gulf Shores Police Department and the city council earlier this month.
“It’s a great honor to receive this award,” Lucas said. “I look at what I did as my job and nothing more. I did the same thing any other officer from this department would do.”
Lucas, 23, is the first police officer in his immediate family and said law enforcement never really crossed his mind while walking the halls of Holtville High School.
Lucas was “an awesome student-athlete” while at Holtville, according to his former principal Dr. Jimmy Hull.
“He played football, basketball and baseball and was an all-around great kid,” Hull remembered.
After graduating from Holtville, Lucas decided his football career wasn’t over so he enrolled at Troy University and was a walk-on.
Lucas earned a scholarship and saw significant playing time as a junior before moving to defensive line his senior season.
While his football career progressed, Lucas turned his attention to criminal justice as a major.
“I wanted to pursue a job where at the end of the day I would look back and wonder what I really accomplished and whether I had any effect on other people,” he said. “I found that in becoming a police officer.”
While playing football at Troy, Lucas earned his undergraduate and his graduate degree in criminal justice.
“I’m in a great place here in Gulf Shores,” Lucas said.
Maybe it was God’s will.