A few months ago, 9-year-old Marshawn Farr-Robinson nearly died when he tried to jump onto the ladder of a train, but the first responders who saved him with a simple, low-cost device met him again on Thursday.
A playful mistake changed a young boy's life forever. Both of his feet were severed by the freight train, and he still has a very long road to recovery. Part of that process involved thanking the people who were there when he needed them most.
It was a reunion more than two months in the making when Farr-Robinson came to Regions Hospital to reconnect with the first-responders who saved his life.
"It's good to see you," Officer Marshall Titus said to Marshawn. "I just want to thank you for being so courageous. You are such an amazing young man."
The last time Titus and Farr-Robinson met, it was an August day. The first-introduction was frantic. Titus and his partner were the first on the scene after the accidental amputee crawled 165 feet to find help.
"Tourniquet, tourniquet, tourniquet was all I was thinking," Tutus recalled.
Doctors from Regions Hospital say that simple device made all the difference.
"Marshawn's case is a situation where seconds matter," Dr. Aaron Burnett said. "The actions of the pre-hospital team were both choreographed and flawless."
As both doctors and police point out, the tourniquets had only been put into the patrol cars two months prior to the incident. That's a fact that shakes Marshawn's mother.
"I try not to think about it," Kim Farr said told Fox 9 News.
St. Paul Police Chief Tom Smith said his department realized the importance of tourniquets almost a year ago after Officer Dan King was shot in the line of duty. King happened carry a tourniquet with him.
"He was able to apply a tourniquet to himself," Smith explained. "He had been a medic in the military and had medical training because he thought about being a medical personnel before becoming a St. Paul Police Officer."
Several months later, grants for tourniquets and training from Regions Hospital helped a rookie officer know how to make the bleeding stop.
"I gave it another couple of turns, and when he cried out in pain and winced, that's when I knew it was properly applied," Titus said.
Farr-Robinson remembers everything, and while the first responders were recognized on Thursday, everyone agreed the boy, who is now 10, is the bravest of all.
Farr asked her son if he was a afraid and thought about dying. The boy nodded and said yes. When asked what was on his mind, he replied, "That I would not be with my family anymore."
The life-saving tourniquets cost just $40 apiece, but not all police departments have them. Minneapolis and St. Paul police both do.
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