Isidore Branham, 38, a U.S. Army veteran, said he was at the 135th Street-Lenox Avenue station early Thursday when he spotted Timothy Moriarity, 57, lying drunkenly on the train tracks, the New York Post reported Friday.
"This woman cried out, 'Oh, my God, somebody fell in the tracks!'" Branham said. "My instincts just came alive. All the training kicked in. I thought, 'I'm here. I can't let this man die.'"
Branham said he ran to the end of the platform and jumped onto the rail bed as the No. 2 train approached.
"He was inside the rail bed between the ties. I picked him up from his arms and dragged him across the rails," he said. "Once I got to the platform, I picked him up from the waist. I wanted to do a fireman's carry but there was no time. The train was coming.
"I grabbed him by his belt. I scooped him up and pushed him on the platform. I curled him and lifted him in front of my body. This guy was really heavy. It was a shock to my body, but I was strong enough," Branham said.
"About 45 seconds after I got him on the platform, the train passed by safely. I backed away when cops and EMS arrived," he said.
Moriarity was unconscious and breathing through a tube Thursday at Harlem Hospital's intensive care unit.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]