Two Strangers on Humboldt’s Social Media Guided Medical to a Man Begging for Help This Morning

Marlies Robinson (left) stayed in touch with the distressed man and Jennifer Lyn Mausa (right) by private message. Meanwhile, Jennifer called 911 for help.

Last night, a man began reaching out on Humboldt County Social media pleading for help. Just before 1 a.m., he posted on 707 Humboldt Classifieds, a closed group, “Need ride to hospital please.” He even tagged this reporter who was asleep.

He posted several different pleas for help but seemed disoriented and unable to clearly articulate where he was and what was wrong. Multiple people reached out to him but two local women in particular were able to get him assistance. Marlies Robinson, who says she was in the medical field for 35 years, was able to persuade him to respond to her by private message and gently get an understanding of where he was located–a Eureka motel. Jennifer Lyn Mausa, also communicating with Robinson by private message, was able to contact law enforcement and let them know where the man was located.

“I got on messenger and just kept reaching out to him,” Robinson told us this morning. “He then started responding…I kept him engaged until…he was located…I said, let them take care of you and he was okay once I told him it was okay.”

Many people posted helpful suggestions on social media and waited for a report on when and if help would reach the man.

“He would not write anyone but Marlies…he trusted her,” Jennifer Mausa, who also says she was in the medical field, explained in the comment section.

But others watched through the night and shared their support. Here’s one small exchange:

Comment section

A Eureka Police officer was able, with Mausa’s and Robinson’s help, to reach the man. According to a report the officer gave over the scanner, the man was having trouble breathing possibly due to anxiety. The man requested an ambulance and was taken to the hospital.

Because of privacy issues we don’t know how the distressed man is doing today. We’ve reached out to him via social media. If we hear back, we’ll update.

Marlies Robinson said this morning, “I pray he is okay now …

But, we’re touched by how many cared. And our hearts are especially warmed this holiday season by the amount of time and effort Jennifer Lyn Mausa and Marlies Robinson gave to helping a confused and frightened stranger across the wide span of the internet.

Humboldt Area Foundation, we’re tagging you because this sounds like the generosity you are looking for in the stories you are gathering for your #100ActsofGiving .



  • Well done and what a great use of Social Media ๐Ÿ‘ It filled the space 911 usually does for someone unable or unwilling to call. Thank you to you caring, persistant folks ๐Ÿงก

  • Agreed with both of the above posts. And to the article๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿพ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿพ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿพ

  • Two beautiful angels!๐Ÿ’š

  • Kym, you are our angel. You have your figure on the pulse and your heart in the right place.

  • This is another example of how social media and texting interfaces to 911 need to be available. People are trying more and more to use social media and SMS to contact 911. In my opinion it’s a natural response to post vs dialing 911 for younger people.

    During both the Rim and Butte fires people tried to contact 911 thru both of my local community fire watch groups. We managed those just as these folks did, with one operator engaging the “callers” and one coordinating to 911.

    In large incidents data connections are all they may have on overloaded cell towers during emergencies. I learned later that cell data runs on separate frequencies that penetrate forest farther than voice systems. Thus a user can have Facebook function in the woods when voice to 911 is not working.

    Its probably time our dispatch systems figured out how to integrate the 15 yr old tech we all use.

    • Various parts of the country do have text 911 service already. It’s also very handy for people who are Deaf or speech impaired.

  • What a great story. I hope the patient is feeling better.

  • Marlins, this does not aurprise me! You are a wonderful human. More people should aspire to be more like you. Love you friend, TMS

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