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Man Killed in Leap From 'Suicide Bridge'

October 27, 1994

A 29-year-old San Dimas man jumped from the Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena on Monday, the first person to kill himself by leaping from the historic structure since its reopening 10 months ago.

John David Parkerson jumped from the bridge about 4:50 p.m., said Pasadena Police Sgt. Chris Vicino. A police helicopter responded to a call about a man on the far side of the bridge but Parkerson jumped before patrol cars arrived minutes later, Vicino said. The helicopter pilot witnessed the suicide, he said.

Since the bridge opened in 1913, about 100 people have committed suicide by leaping into the Arroyo Seco 160 feet below.

Pasadena Police Lt. Alex Uribe said the bridge has been dubbed the "Suicide Bridge" because of the number of people who have chosen to leap from atop its spiked railing.

The bridge was closed from November, 1989, to December, 1993, for seismic renovations. During renovations in March, 1990, a 52-year-old Anaheim woman leaped to her death.

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