"It was an instinctive reaction." Grzegorz Paczek, security worker at the Katowice-Pyrzowice airport in Poland, said when a video of his heroic act of saving a baby from hitting the strong, cold concrete pavement went viral.
It was one of those ordinary days in Nov 23 when travelers from around the world fly through and forth to destinations. Only that global airports are especially busy these days because of the festive Christmas season.
A passenger looks out the window at Miami International Airport in Miami December 10, 2013. Picture taken December 10, 2013. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri
Poland's Katowice-Pyrzowice airport is no exception.
As is routinary, on duty Mr Paczek was screening passenger travelers passing through the airport. One by one, they came and went without fuss and fanfare.
Then the turn of the baby and its father, both unidentified, came.
After having passing through the scanner and having laid down his concessions, the father slowly started retrieving his possessions on the checkpoint counter. In order to have a smooth fluid action, he decided to place his child on top of the counter.
Based on the CCTV footage, everything happened at the blink of an eye, faster than a speeding bullet.
The father was trying to put on his jacket when lo and behold, he got rattled by Mr Paczek's dive. What surprised him more, was that his baby was no longer on top of the checkpoint counter but safely ensconced in Mr Paczek's arms.
"I noticed the child was sitting on the table and he looked a bit off balance, and then he began to fall forward," Mr Paczek was quoted by the Telegraph. "I was standing four to five metres away and I realized I had no chance of stopping him fall so I just threw myself along the ground with my arms outstretched. It was an instinctive reaction."
Security airport authorities will give Mr Paczek an extra Christmas bonus for his action.
"I don't feel I've done anything heroic," Mr Paczek said. "I'm just glad the child wasn't hurt. He started to cry when I caught him but his mother soon calmed him down."
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