Tumblr Post Spurs 8-Hour Race to Stop Teen's Suicide
Sets off nationwide search for unknown blogger
By Ruth Brown,  Newser Staff
Posted May 15, 2013 11:36 AM CDT

(Newser) – Tumblr: It isn't all animated GIFs and Ryan Gosling. USA Today recounts the incredible story of how one teen's cry for help in a May 6 Tumblr post set off a nationwide search to find the girl before she committed suicide. It started when 18-year-old Jackie Rosas from Cathedral City, California, saw the troubling post by the 16-year-old, whose blog she had read for a year. Armed with only the blog URL, the girl's first name, and the fact that she was in her school's color guard, Rosas called a suicide hotline and then local police. An officer took over the case around 5pm and set about tracking her down.

The officer sought help from a local high school; administrators didn't recognize the girl from her blog photo, but they joined the hunt, locating her Twitter feed. In it, they spotted a November tweet referencing the "UHS marching band." Their web sleuthing finally surfaced a newspaper article on a marching band that provided the key piece of evidence: Union Township, New Jersey. They contacted police in the area around 1:30am; they were dispatched to a local address where they found the girl, who had taken some pills, and got her medical attention. "I was happy to know that I saved someone's life," said Rosas. "It happened at random and it's an amazing feeling knowing you are able to help someone from thousands of miles away."