ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — A 9-year-old boy is in the hospital Friday morning after losing both of his feet in an accident involving a train.
St. Paul Police said it happened at about 6 p.m. Thursday near Farrington Street and Ivy Avenue. Neighbors who saw it happen called 911 immediately.
Witnesses said the boy, 9-year-old Marshawn Kenneth Farr-Robinson, had been playing by the train tracks as a moving train went by.
The boy apparently slipped and fell under the wheels of a Canadian Pacific Railway freight train and had both of his feet severed near his ankles. Police said they do not suspect any foul play in the incident, and said it’s just a tragic case of an accident where a child was being a child.
The boy was alone at the time of the accident. He was taken to Regions Hospital, where he is recovering from major injuries to both legs. David Thornton is a neighbor who helped Marshawn immediately after the accident.
“The boy courageously crawled from the railroad tracks 100 to 150 feet to where he laid, then we tried to assist him the best we could,” Thornton said. “While life is going to be very different from now on, I told him ‘You’re going to make it, you’re going to make it.’ He’s going to live.”
Thornton said the boy just kept asking for his mom after the accident. Neighbors said they’ll rally around this family and help them in any way they can.
“It just reminds me what I tell my kids, that it’s so important with trains. There are no second chances with trains,” he said. “You have to stay away from a moving train. It’s fun to watch them go by, but my heart goes out to his family.”
Neighbor Pao Xiong often reminds his kids to stay away from the train tracks near their house, but he sees others cross on a daily basis.
“Sometimes they come by track over there, and I tell them to ‘Keep off the track’ because the train keeps coming,” Xiong said.
Vickie Flohrs echoes Xiong’s concern about the neighborhood.
“I’m surprised that this hasn’t happened before because there’s so many that go back there,” Flohrs said.
Within 15 minutes of being at the site of the accident, WCCO witnessed several kids crossing the tracks.
Marshawn’s condition had not been released.