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Rescue Made Cop Worldwide Hero. 1 Year Later, Wins Big on NBC Game Show

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It was August 2016. A call came in to the New Jersey Transit Police Department about an angry passenger.

Officer Victor Ortiz responded to the call at the Secaucus Junction train station. But when the suicidal man laid on eyes on the officer, he jumped from the platform onto the tracks.

A train was barreling towards him. The officer jumped onto the tracks to try and save him, knowing he was risking his life in the process.

The man begged Ortiz to let him die, but the 18-year veteran refused. “I’m not gonna let you die.”

Ortiz struggled to pull the man, later identified as 56-year-old Allan Jefferson, to safety. He told himself to keep trying and with his last mighty pull, he was able to get Jefferson’s body out of harm’s way with only a split second to spare.

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The clip of Ortiz’s heroic rescue spread like wildfire. The officer says he was just doing his job, though.

Flash forward to Jan. 8, 2018. That’s when Ortiz was “repaid” for his heroic deed, big time, on NBC’s game show “The Wall.”

Ortiz had actually filmed the episode last April, but the outcome had to be kept secret until the episode air date on Jan. 8.

Before playing a pachinko game, similar to “Plinko” from “The Price is Right,” host Chris Hardwick joked with Ortiz that hopefully he would win enough to not have to work so many third shifts.

“Oh, I’m praying for that,” a laughing Ortiz replied.

It was a family trivia game where his wife, Evelyn, had to answer questions correctly. Before each question, Ortiz picked a slot between $1 to $1 million.

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For each question she got right, they won the amount of money Ortiz selected. For each question she got wrong, they lost that amount.

In the end, the family walked away with $499,899. “We’re going home with a half a million dollars!” Ortiz screamed.

The day after the show aired, Ortiz was back on patrol. “I love what I do, I wake up every morning wanting to do this job.”

Evelyn recently finished treatment for breast cancer so now the family is planning to use some of their winnings to take a trip to celebrate, as well as pay for their daughter’s college tuition.

“Here we are, after all we’ve been through,” said Ortiz, “so let’s enjoy our lives because we don’t know what tomorrow will bring.”

It couldn’t have happened to a more deserving person. Congratulations to the Ortiz family!

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Keeley is a former contributor to The Western Journal.
Keeley is a former contributor to The Western Journal.




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