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Man survives 2 Metrolink train crashes

September 17, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
One of the passengers who survived last Friday's disastrous Metrolink crash is a man who walked away from a Metrolink train crash that left 11 people dead in 2005. The Myles family of Moorpark, California, figures if there ever was a perfect time to buy lottery tickets, it's now. Richard Myles is at Kaiser Sunset recovering from a broken neck after surviving last week's deadly Metrolink train crash.

But this wasn't the first train collision Myles has survived. He was also a passenger on the Metrolink train that crashed in Glendale in 2005 that killed 11 people. Myles walked away with a minor knee injury in that accident.

"This accident wasn't like that at all," said Richard Myles. "I knew right away I was injured. It's really strange -- the first accident was supposed to have been the most severe, and you know, 'it's not going to happen again.'"

Myles doesn't remember much about the moments before Friday's deadly collision. He was headed home from work, and crowding on the train forced him to take a seat closer to the front than he normally would.

"I know they were getting ready to go through the tunnel, because it makes a curve before it gets into the Santa Susana Pass," said Myles. "And the next thing I know, I was picking myself off the floor -- I had been catapulted forward."

He suffered a severe spinal-cord injury. But that's not what brought him to tears. It was memories of the Good Samaritans who rushed to the crash scene to lend a hand.

"A lot of neighbors came out with bottles of water," said Myles.

It was also an emotional moment for Myles's wife and daughter, who for hours, didn't know if he had survived or not.

"It was just like a miracle, a prayer answered," said Richard's wife, Helen Myles. "Just to hear his voice, we just burst into tears and hugged each other."

Richard Myles is expected to make a full recovery. He doesn't know if he'll ever ride a train again. His thoughts now are with the families of the other passengers who weren't as fortunate as he was.

 

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