New York News

Port Authority Bus Terminal Stab Victim: Jesus ‘Was Holding His Hand Up’ to Save Me 

In any situation, “I ask myself how Jesus would handle it,” said Daniel Salvatore, who credits the Lord with saving his life. (Photo: Courtesy of Daniel Salvatore)

MIDTOWN — Daniel Salvatore firmly believes that Jesus Christ saved his life when he was stabbed and slashed numerous times in the neck in a harrowing, unprovoked attack outside the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown.

Salvatore, who said he’s grateful to be alive, added that he is certain his life was spared because of Jesus. “I feel that He was holding his hand up during the attack to stop my attacker from doing worse harm to me,” recalled Salvatore.

While the knife penetrated his neck, the wounds weren’t deep enough to sever his carotid artery, he said. Still, he needed 46 stitches to close his wounds.

“I’m still here because Jesus didn’t want me to die yet. I guess that’s because he has more for me to do here,” Salvatore told The Tablet from his home in Boonton, New Jersey, where he is recuperating.

Salvatore is a carpenter —  just like Jesus was. A Christian, he is a member of Christ the King Church in Morris County, New Jersey, a nondenominational congregation.

Port Authority stabbing victim Daniel Salvatore shows his wounds in his hospital bed. (Photo: Getty Images)

Salvatore recalled the attack, saying that he is still shocked by what happened. He had arrived at the Port Authority by bus from New Jersey at around 5:45 a.m.on Monday, April 22, and was sitting on a bench outside the terminal reading a book while waiting for a co-worker to pick him up to drive him to work.

“I usually sit at this one spot right across from a convenience store and a Dunkin Donuts. Sitting there, I opened my book and started reading. About five minutes later, a man appeared to me on my blindside. I turned to look at him to see what he wanted. And that’s when I felt the knife coming to my neck,” he said.

The attacker never said a word to him, Salvatore recalled. He just kept stabbing him — a total of eight times.

“I turned my face away because I didn’t want to get stabbed in the face,” he said.

Salvatore knew he had to get away from the attacker. He turned to his left and tried to move. “But he just kept stabbing me,” he said. “But I kind of crawled away as best I could. And I was yelling for help. I didn’t want to turn around to fight the guy because I didn’t want the knife to come into my face.”

The entire incident took approximately 14 seconds. 

He crawled into the Dunkin Donuts, where customers started grabbing napkins for him to put to his neck to stem the bleeding. “There was blood all over the place,” he said. “People were there to take care of me and I’m grateful for that.”

Police responded quickly and subdued the suspect, identified as Michael McCloskey, 42, and took him into custody. McCloskey was arrested and charged with attempted murder, assault, and weapons possession.

Salvatore was taken by ambulance to Bellevue Hospital, where he was kept overnight for tests. He was released the following day, which happened to be his 66th birthday. “I got a great birthday present, being able to go home,” he said.

Salvatore, who is the father of three grown children, said his family was greatly relieved to know that he was going to be OK. And members of his church have also reached out to him. “Between them and my family, I must have gotten 200 texts in the first 24 hours,” he said.

The area around the Port Authority Bus Terminal on Eighth Avenue was busy during the time he was attacked, Daniel Salvatore said. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

However, he said something has to be done about violent crime in New York City. “It’s a shame that dangerous people with mental health issues are roaming the streets. You have to be alert at all times,” he added.

Salvatore is planning on returning to work soon. 

“I’m kind of looking forward to going back to my same perch in that area. I’m not sure my co-workers are going to let me do that. But you know, I’m fine. We’ll see when I get there. Things have a way of coming back to your mind. But as of right now, I’m doing OK,” he said.