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Rap star rescue: US musician T.I. helps talks down suicidal man

15 OCTOBER 2010

He's known as a bit of a bad boy who's had his own share of difficulties.

And rapper T.I. put his own experiences to good use this week when he helped talk a suicidal man down from the ledge of a radio station building in Atlanta.

Hearing about the man's plight on the radio, the 30-year-old jumped in his car and drove to the scene to persuade the man to come down.

"I went down there and talked to a police office and he sent me to the negotiator," the musician – real name Clifford Harris Jr – told People magazine.

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"They told him I was there and he started responding a little bit.

"I told him, 'It's not that bad and that I was there for him and (that) there is nothing that you can't get through as long as you are willing to put the time and energy into it," he said.

"But first things first. You're going to have to come on down here and holler at me."

After negotiators showed T.I.'s message, which he videotaped, the man came down – and the star was waiting for a heart-to-heart.

"The first thing I said to him was, 'Man, what's up? What's wrong?'"

"He just shook his head and took a deep breath and said, 'Everything.' He was kind of depressed and kind of just worn out by life," said the rap star.

Speaking about his rescue mission, the humble Takers actor added: "It wasn’t heroism. It was just me listening to my spirit.

"I have a very hard time taking credit for it. It was God's work. I just showed up."

T.I. is going through some problems of his own at the moment, after being arrested with his wife for drug possession last month.

But he says he won't be beaten by the situation. "These past six weeks…I've been feeling tired and weak," he says. "But I'm not ready to give up. I'm ready to defeat it and move on."

He has also denied reports the incident was a publicity stunt.

"This is not something I could have planned," the rapper told CNN.

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