A Tennessee police officer twice awarded for his heroism died Thursday in Nashville after jumping into a frigid river to save a woman trying to kill herself, the Tennessean reports. Eric Mumaw, 44, and two other officers arrived at a boat ramp on the Cumberland River around 4:30am for reports of a suicidal woman. They found 40-year-old Juli Glisson sitting in a car parked on the ramp. While they were trying to negotiate with her, the car rolled backward down the ramp and into the water, according to WTVF. Mumaw and another officer went into the river to rescue Glisson but were swept away from the boat ramp. Glisson and the other officer made it back to shore; Mumaw didn't.
It took a fire department diver several hours to recover Mumaw's body, WKRN reports. Afterward, the city ordered flags lowered to half mast in his honor. Mayor Megan Barry says Mumaw "gave his life" for the "safety and protection of us all." Police said Mumaw "died doing what he loves" and remembered him as "always smiling and joking." "We always traded insults with each other in a friendly way," police chief Steve Anderson says. "That’s how he was with everybody." Glisson, who has been hospitalized for suicidal thoughts in the past, per her boyfriend, is under criminal investigation. (Read more Nashville stories.)