Baby caught after falling from second story fire escape

Posted on: 1:09 pm, June 20, 2013, by

Cristina Torre (photo from CNN)

Cristina Torre (photo from CNN)

(CNN) — It must have been a terrifying sight. Two stories up, a baby, legs dangling, clutching the black metal edge of the fire escape with his little hands.

And then, the even more terrifying sight of a child in free fall.

But what could have been a horrifying tragedy turned into a celebration Wednesday when Montessori school teacher Cristina Torre — daughter of the former New York Yankees manager Joe Torre — caught the 1-year-old after he bounced off an awning.

“I honestly did not feel his weight,” she told CNN Thursday. “It was effortless. He felt light as a feather.”

Torre was hailed as a hero for catching the child, who police say had crawled out onto the fire escape after pushing aside a piece of cardboard covering a hole next to the second-floor apartment’s air conditioner.

The boy’s parents, however, weren’t receiving quite the same reception.

They were awaiting arraignment Thursday on child endangerment charges. Three other children in the apartment, ages 2, 3 and 5 — were placed in the custody of Child Protective Services.

Their 1-year-old son, whose name has not been released, was discharged from Lutheran Medical Center in Brooklyn hours after the incident, a hospital spokeswoman said Thursday. It wasn’t immediately clear where he was Thursday.

Torre said she was passing by the apartment building when she looked up and saw the baby’s precarious situation. She got on her phone and called 911 while she maneuvered herself into position under the boy.

“The minute he let go, I just hoped for the best and had my arms out waiting for him,” she said.

Torre said the boy was crying and bleeding from the mouth after hitting something on the way down, but otherwise seemed to be all right.

The boy’s father came down later, thanked Torre for saving his son and gave her a hug.

She hugged him back, she said.

Torre’s dad released a statement Wednesday night saying, “I am very proud of my daughter Cristina’s actions today during an incident in Brooklyn involving a small child. Fortunately for that child she was in the right place at the right time to lend a hand.”