The screaming of the crowd was what alerted Antonio Love that something serious was happening Monday at the Kingsbridge Road station on the New York subway.
Upon reaching the edge of the platform, according to the New York Times, he saw that a man was on the track trying to get someone out from under the train. It was the 5-year-old girl Ferni Balbuena who seconds earlier had fallen before a convoy of line 4 when her father, Fernando Balbuena, had thrown himself onto the tracks carrying her in his arms.
The train had run over the 45-year-old man, who died immediately, while the girl was trapped under the train, miraculously with only superficial injuries.
Love said that when she jumped onto the road to give the stranger a hand, she could see the body of the man crushed by the train and the bloody girl, crying and asking her dad. "The only thing she said was: 'Papa, my papa," she recalled in her statements to the newspaper.
The two good Samaritans managed to convince the little girl to crawl out from under the train. Both men were then rushed to a hospital to be treated for the injuries they sustained from jumping onto the road.
But what hurt Love the most, in addition to the emotional impact of the tragedy he had witnessed, was the reaction of the multitude of travelers crowded on the platform, who instead of helping took out their phones and began to record, as if they were spectators of a reality show. How, New Yorkers pulling out the phone? Come down and help,”the 32-year-old told the Times.
Although the reaction of those present was not the greatest disappointment. Before jumping onto the track, he left the bag he was carrying on the platform. When he went up after rescuing the little girl, he no longer found her. "Who does such a thing?" "I am saving lives and someone is taking my bag."
Authorities have not yet determined what led Balbuena to jump in front of a train with her daughter in her arms, but her family indicated that she had suffered from depression, although no one thought that she would do something like what she did.
"He was a good husband, a good father, a good provider and a good man," the deceased's wife, Niurka Caraballo, told the New York Post. "I had no idea".
She reported that she knew something was wrong when her husband called him at around 8 am after he had gone out with Ferni to find the train for the Kingbridge Road station in the Bronx. He did not understand what he was saying, but he suspected that there was something wrong and went out to meet them. She did not arrive on time, the girl's godfather, Luis Sánchez, told the press.
Fortunately, he was reunited soon after with his daughter, who was rushed to a hospital, from which she was released hours later dressed in a New York police cap.
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