After Incredible Ski Lift Rescue, This Man Went On TV To Publicly Thank The Person Who Saved His Life

"I wanted to be able to say thank you publicly and not just be part of a news cycle."

"Sometimes the universe puts a person in your life when you need them the most," Ellen DeGeneres says before introducing her guests Richard and Mickey.

During their interview, Mickey, a professional slackliner, explains how he noticed Richard hanging from his backpack off a ski lift at Arapahoe Basin. The two had mutual friends and had met that day to go skiing. 

"He also bought me a burrito that morning, too," Richard says with a smile. 

But while on the chairlift, something went terribly wrong — and suddenly, Richard's backpack got caught in the chair, causing him to hang from his neck above the ground. He passed out a few minutes later.  

Thinking quickly, Mickey slid his way from his seat across the top of the lift's cables to get to Richard's chair. With the help of the Arapahoe Basin Ski Patrol, Mickey was able to cut Richard down so that patrolmen could perform CPR.

After explaining the incident, Ellen points out that initially, Richard didn't want to talk about what happened. 

"I wanted to keep the focus on the real hero here, and the rescue. I didn't think I had much to contribute to that story," Richard says. "The story is about the miracle of Mickey having the skills and the ability to jump up there and do what he did ... [but] I wanted to be able to say thank you publicly and not just be part of a news cycle."

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