Tens of thousands of people were transfixed Friday afternoon when a man got himself wedged between two walls near Ala Moana for more than three hours until firefighters came to his rescue.
Michael Anthony Maggiacomo spoke to KHON2 and tells us he’s grateful to the firefighters who got him out safely.
Many in the area know him as Baseball Mike. He tells us he likes to play catch on top of the Heald College Plaza.
Mike says he bounces baseballs off the wall all the time. He’s lost a few between the buildings but that Friday afternoon he didn’t want to lose another one again.
“This is like the sixth ball, so I think ‘Okay, I got to go down and get these,'” Mike said.
The space between the two buildings is only 9 inches wide and Mike thought he could fit between the two walls.
“I saw that it was skinny at the bottom but I’m skinny, very skinny,” he said.
He shimmied down his way 15 feet to the bottom.
“That’s when I learned that, ‘uh oh,’ but hey I’m down here to get the baseballs, so go a little lower, go a little lower,” Mike said. “I just didn’t think I wasn’t coming back out of that hole period.”
But he thought wrong. Mike has now found himself on his side, trapped.
Officials say it was a Walgreens customer who heard Mike’s cry for help and called 911.
That’s when more than three hours of hammering and drilling began.
“I could hear dong dong dong so I know they are coming, as it was reverberating, I know they were there,” he said. “But I was like I’m dying and there’s a point where you tap out, you literally tap out.”
The entire time, firefighters communicated with Mike to calm him down.
After getting out, Mike only has respect and gratitude towards the first responders who saved him.
“I’m just happy to be here you know that,” he said.
Mike was taken to the hospital in serious condition. He has no major injuries and says he’s recovering just fine.