Edmonton man considering career change after saving man from train tracks

Edmonton man considering career change after saving man from train tracks

After saving someone from the train tracks at an Edmonton LRT station, Chris Sampson is considering a career as a first responder.

Sampson, a second-year electrician apprentice, was at the Churchill LRT station, heading to class at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology on Friday when he heard two people yelling.

"Maybe I'll get to see a fight today," the 27-year-old said he was thinking on Friday. He walked toward the voices, with both men in his sights.

The familiar chime of an LRT train arriving went off and one of the men turned around to catch the train, Sampson presumed.

The other man punched him from behind. "He goes completely stiff, drops onto the track," Sampson recalled.

Quick reaction

Dropping his bag and his tablet, Sampson rushed to aid the man on the tracks. He said the man was unconscious, and was too heavy for Sampson to hoist back onto the platform by himself.

Another man helped Sampson get the unconscious man to safety. But Sampson himself was still on the tracks, and as he tried to climb back up, he slipped.

"When I was down there, and I made the first attempt and fell back down, the thought went through my mind, 'I really hope I don't die from this guy,'" he told CBC Sunday.

Luckily, the train had stopped a few metres short of Sampson. He then climbed back up to safety.

He noticed there were two cops in the station who handcuffed the man who punched the other man. Seeing the situation was under control, he hopped onto the LRT that stopped in front of him a short while before — without talking to the cops at all.

"I saw that they had the situation under control. I was going to be late for school," he said, laughing.

'Not allowed to die'

Sampson, who is married and has a five-year-old daughter, said his wife was sleeping when the events unfolded. She had to find out just like everyone else — via Facebook.

Needless to say, his wife wasn't too pleased.

"She promptly told me when I got home that I'm not allowed to die," he said.

He didn't die, but the rescue made him reconsider his education. "I'm genuinely considering being a first responder," he said. "I definitely feel good after what happened.

"Now that I know that's something that I could do, that I could help, maybe that's the way I'm going to go."

Whether he changes his career path is still undecided, but Sampson hopes at the very least his story inspires others.

"Hopefully, it inspires someone else to not be a bystander," he said. "If there are less bystanders in the world, it will all be for the good."