Immigrant who saved boy speaks to 12 News
12 News
Nov. 27, 2007

Melissa Gonzalo, 12 News

26-year-old Jesus Manuel Cordova had already made it into the U.S. when he spotted the 9-year-old boy from Rimrock on the side of the road looking for help. Cordova said as he got closer, he saw the boy's legs were bleeding.

They couldn't understand each other due to a language barrier, but Cordova went over to the car and tried to help the boy's mom. She had lost control of their car Thanksgiving Day and drove it off a cliff near Arivaca. Cordova couldn't do anything to help her, but he decided to stay with the boy all night, building a fire to keep him warm until help arrived the next morning.

Santa Cruz County Sheriff Tony Estrada said, "If this man hadn't been around, I think this boy would've fared pretty bad. It was getting dark, it was getting cold. He was out in the middle of nowhere." Cordova said he doesn't consider himself a hero, but asks himself, 'how many others would have done the same?'

The boy was picked up by an ambulance. Cordova was picked up by Border Patrol. He said they didn't even get a chance to say good-bye. But he said the boy was able to tell him "gracias," thank you in Spanish. Cordova said he did feel a little sad when Border Patrol picked him up because he had already taken the biggest step and had to go back to Mexico.

Cordova admits he was breaking the law, but he asks what would have happened to the boy if he didn't. He said he would like to be able to meet with President Bush. He said what he would tell him would be between him and the President. Meanwhile, the boy was picked up by his family in New Mexico.