Letter carrier saves life of girl, 14, from being choked by 300 pound psychiatric patient

Joseph Moskal’s co-workers weren’t joking when they recently placed a Superman-style “J” emblem on the Buffalo, NY, letter carrier’s case.

They were acknowledging a real act of derring-do: Moskal saved the life of a 14-year-old girl who was being choked by a 300-pound man.

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Buffalo, NY, Letter Carrier Joseph Moskal is honored at a recent ceremony. From left: National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 3 President Larry Kania, Moskal, Postmaster Thomas Szklarz and Westside Station Customer Services Manager Paul Urbanski.

Buffalo, NY, Letter Carrier Joseph Moskal is honored at a recent ceremony. From left: National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 3 President Larry Kania, Moskal, Postmaster Thomas Szklarz and Westside Station Customer Services Manager Paul Urbanski.

Moskal heard the teenager screaming on her porch while he was delivering mail. By the time he reached her, she was unconscious, bleeding — and still in the grip of her attacker.

Moskal threw the man to the ground and, with a neighbor’s help, restrained him until police arrived.

A district police chief told The Buffalo News that the attacker, a 29-year-old man with a history of mental health problems, targeted the girl randomly.

Moskal and the neighbor saved her life, the chief said.

The teen was treated at a hospital. The suspect was hospitalized at a psychiatric facility and expected to face charges upon his release.

“We are proud that you are one of us,” Westside Station Customer Services Manager Paul Urbanski told Moskal at a ceremony honoring him. “We all aspire to be like you — a true hero.”