Who is Sean Conaboy? New York hero tackled man who stabbed Kelli Daley, 54, at Union Square subway
'I immediately ran to that spot, then I just jumped on his back and I tackled him. Then I was on top of him,' Sean Conaboy said
UNION SQUARE, MANHATTAN: A woman was stabbed by a stranger while she was standing on a subway platform in the heart of Manhattan, but fortunately a good Samaritan jumped into action to save her life.
Kelli Daley, 54, was stabbed by a man identified as 22-year-old Joshua Nazario at the Union Square station on Wednesday night, May 19. Police have stated that Nazario slashed Daley across her left shoulder, collarbone and upper chest while she was waiting on the southbound N, Q, R platform for the train at 10.10pm, but at that time, 52-year-old Sean Conaboy came to Daley's rescue.
Conaboy, a freelance cameraman who works for the Canadian Broadcasting Company (CBC), was finishing his 12-hour shift in Times Square when he saw the horrific incident. In no time, Conaboy decided to jump in and stop the attack. Conaboy tackled Nazario to the ground and restrained him until police arrived.
Daley was later taken to Bellevue Hospital for treatment of her multiple stab wounds. She later recalled the horror attack in an interview with New York Daily News. "I just put my glasses on and was just looking at my phone," Daley said. "Somebody came up behind me kind of like when you see a long lost friend and they hug you." Next thing she knew she was being slashed by someone she had never met. "I felt stabbing," Daley said. "I screamed loud. I kept screaming. My first thought was: 'This can't be happening.' I thought it was like a hug, like someone who knew me. I think he just wanted to stab me. It was very strange." Daley said of Nazario: "I just wish he would've gotten the help he needs. I wish I would've understood why he was so angry at a stranger."
Conaboy said before the attack he had noticed something odd about Nazario standing on the subway platform, he was wearing winter clothes, despite the hot weather outside. "I looked at his face, as he walked past me," Conaboy said. "He looked in my eyes." Moments later he heard a woman screaming and he jumped in to help. "It was in that instant that I saw a woman," he told the Daily News. "She got pulled back out of my line of sight, away from the platform edge, and I heard a scream. And then I saw the knife come out from behind the column, in a full grip in a downward jagged position. I immediately ran to that spot, then I just jumped on his back and I tackled him. Then I was on top of him."
"At this point, I don't know where the knife is. At some point in the scuffle, the woman got out and escaped," he said. Conaboy described it as a 'substantially sized knife' and said he was scared that he could be stabbed by Nazario, but thankfully someone had kicked the knife out of his hand before he was wrestled to the ground. "I knew as long as he had that knife that I was in very serious danger," Conaboy said. "I knew if he turned to face me that I'm going to be stabbed."
"This unprovoked violence is inexcusable," Conaboy said. "The mayor said it's safe to ride the trains but he has security detail and he's 6 feet tall. This was a 50-year-old woman. I'm mostly angry at the fact that people can't simply wait on a crowded platform without getting attacked from behind."
The incident marks the second stabbing incident that took place at Union Square in the last two days after a commuter was slashed in the neck with a pocket knife on a platform. Also, this is the 17th such attack in the subway over the past two weeks.