Nation

Iowa man saves couple stuck on tracks

Chris Ihle described pushing a stalled car with an elderly couple inside to safety as a train barreled toward them.

Rodney White/The Des Moines Register/Associated Press

Chris Ihle described pushing a stalled car with an elderly couple inside to safety as a train barreled toward them.

AMES, Iowa — An Iowa man is being hailed as a hero for pushing an elderly couple’s stalled car from a railroad crossing with a freight train bearing down on them.

Chris Ihle, 38, said he was returning from lunch Wednesday and had just parked his motorcycle at the Wells Fargo Bank in Ames where he works when he noticed that a Pontiac Bonneville was sitting frozen in the nearby rail crossing with a train approaching.

Advertisement

Ihle ran over and screamed at the couple inside, 84-year-old Marion Papich and his 78-year-old wife, Jean, to move, but they didn’t.

‘‘They just sat there and the train was coming,’’ the father of three told The Des Moines Register.

Ihle tried pushing the car forward, but it wouldn’t budge. So he moved to the car’s front and told Marion Papich to make sure it was in neutral. He then dug in his cowboy boots and heaved as the train bore down on them with its horn blaring and brakes screeching.

‘‘You could hear it. I even think I could smell it,’’ Ihle said.

Ihle managed to push the car about 5 feet to safety, seconds before the train rumbled by, missing him by inches.

Advertisement

Ihle tried to speak to the couple, but they were too shaken to talk.

‘‘It’s all still kind of a blur to me,’’ Ihle said. ‘‘Holy cow.’’

Loading comments...
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to Globe.com for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.