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Teenager crushed under freight train

By CHLOE ADAMS and CAMERON SMITH

15jul03

A TEENAGER paid for his first real mistake with his life when he was crushed under a freight train early yesterday.

Daniel Noble, 17, of Albanvale, tried to follow two other young men who jumped from a platform into an open carriage as the train passed Sunshine station about 12.30am.

Daniel's mother Ally said he was a kind-hearted boy who enjoyed lawn bowls and wanted to be an actor.

"He was just one of those kids you like first time," said Ms Noble, of Albanvale.

"He was always there to listen when someone needed to talk."

Ms Noble said she believed her son met two men, 18 and 24, at a pool hall just hours before his death. She said she believed they were drinking together.

"They weren't his regular friends. His close mates are so angry. It's just such a waste," Ms Noble said.

It was the second train accident involving teenagers in less than a week.

On Thursday, Gavin Slipais, 15, suffered critical injuries when he jumped from M>Train's Melbourne-Frankston service when confronted by ticket inspectors.

Sen-Sgt Mick Barry, of the police transit unit, urged young people to be cautious near trains.

"Both incidents have been very tragic," Sen-Sgt Barry said.

"It tells me some of our young commuters need to take more care. We don't want to see them get injured, or worse."

The three young men were seen on the Sunshine platform by the two drivers of the 900m freight train as it passed through about 15kmh.

After the train had cleared the station, the drivers realised they were no longer standing on the platform.

They alerted staff at the Sunshine signal box who called police.

Police stopped the train at Craigieburn station, where two of the men were found sitting inside an open wagon.

They were not concerned about Daniel because they thought he decided not to jump aboard. Daniel's body was found on the tracks near the Sunshine station about 3.30am.

The surviving pair suffered a gashed chin and a minor arm injury.

Freight Australia assistant general manager John Guiry said it was very dangerous to leap on to a moving train.

"It is something you see in the movies like James Bond," Mr Guiry said. "It's not really like that in real life."

Ms Noble said Daniel had a zest for life, was a keen athlete and an aspiring actor.

He left Deer Park Secondary College during Year 11 to concentrate on acting. He recently completed an acting course and was looking forward to a career in front ofthe cameras.

"He was just so passionate about cameras and acting," Ms Noble said.

Daniel also enjoyed playing football and was a regular at the Sunshine Bowls Club.

His funeral will be in Whyalla, South Australia, where the family lived until last year.

A memorial service will be held at Deer Park Secondary College

The story in print

sad.gif

that was ten days ago .. now im going through a rollercoaster ..

I didnt know who my son was with but have since found out .. I had banned my son from hanging with him ..

A week before this happened I had told my son off for ringing me when he missed his train as I had to work the next day .. all these stupid what ifs ..

No one will tell me how he actually died .. what actually killed him .. so I keep visuallising all these things ..

the police told me he died at 12:35am but his phone rang my daughters phone at 2:36 am .. they didnt find him for 3 hours .. there are piees missing .. im worried he was still alive .. but its like a wall of silence .. I got a letter from the coroner yesterday stating the inquest will be in 10 weeks .. but I know this sounds macabre but I need to know before then I cant sleep .. I havent slept since Monday .. I cant eat I feel sick ..

Im not sure where to go from here

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Dearest Ally,

I am so very sorry for the loss of your precious son.

My heart and my prayers go out to you. I hope that you are given some sense of quiet that will allow you to get that sleep that you are desperately needing. Daniel sounds like a wonderful kid, full of life and promise. I have not lost a child, but I can relate to the unexpected suddenness of your loss of Daniel. I know that it is so hard to know what to do now, how to keep living or even keep breathing, but just take one moment at a time. Keep reaching out, find every opportunity to tell your story and find what ever comfort you can where ever you can. I pray you are eventually given answers that will put your mind to rest somewhat.

Sending your warm hugs to wrap yourself in,

Love and Blessings,

Lynda (bobsgal)

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Im a mum to 5 children ....6,11,14,16 and 18 years.........I had 2 misscarriages too.....I cant even start to imagine the pain you must be feeling......to lose a child is unbearable........my thoughts and love and prayers are with you.....Im sorry I cant say anything thats really of any help......hugs Bev

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Dear Ally,

Like everyone else reading your tragic story, I am terribly shocked and saddened to read of the death of your precious son Daniel and the horrifying circumstances of the accident that killed him. That your son “paid for his first real mistake with his life” is beyond understanding, and I cannot begin to imagine how devastating this loss must be for you.

I am struck by your statement that no one will tell you how your son actually died, that important details are missing, and that all your questions are being met with a “wall of silence.”

I want to assure you that your need to know the details of what happened to your son is NOT “macabre”– it is a normal and legitimate response to the unanticipated and violent manner in which your son was killed. The suddenness of Daniel’s death, the way you were notified about the accident, the fact that you had no opportunity to get to your son to spend loving time with him before he died, or to see and touch and hold his body – all these factors are complicating the grief you are experiencing now.

Getting to one’s child as soon as possible after a fatal accident is extremely important to parents – even though they may encounter considerable resistance from law enforcement officials and others in allowing them to do so. Read the words of another mother who found herself in a similar position:

Permission was finally granted for me to see Timothy on the condition that I “didn’t do anything silly.” As they watched, I presumed that meant I was not to touch him or disturb anyone. But Timothy was my child; he had not ceased to be my child. (He had not suddenly become a corpse, a body or the deceased.) I desperately needed to hold him, to look at him, to see his wounds. I needed to comfort and cuddle him, to examine and inspect him, to try to understand and most of all to hold him. Yet, I had been told “not to do anything silly.” If I did, I feared my watchers would run in, constrain me and lead me away. So I betrayed my own instincts and my son by standing there and "not doing anything silly." Our society has lost touch with our most basic instincts – the instincts we share with other mammals. We marvel at a mother cat washing her kittens. We admire the protection an elephant gives her sick calf. We are tearful and sympathize when an animal refuses to leave its dead offspring, nuzzling him and willing him to live again. That is exactly what a mother’s human instinct tells her to do. If a mother is not able to examine, hold and nuzzle her dead child, she is being denied motherhood in its extreme (Awooner-Renner, S., “I Desperately Needed to See My Son,” British Medical Journal, 32, 356.)

Family members who aren’t given time with their loved one’s body at the scene of an accident or aren’t told the truth about the body tend to imagine images far more grotesque than reality, and they commonly fill in the blanks between the bits and pieces they pick up from the media, the coroner’s office, the police investigators and others. Given only get minimal facts, their fantasies are often far worse than the reality of what actually happened.

When the time feels right to you and if you still feel a need to do so, I want to encourage you to find out exactly what happened to your son. There is nothing wrong with your wanting to seek out whoever was the final link to your dead son (the first officer on the scene, the paramedic who put him in the ambulance or the coroner who examined his body and determined the cause of death) and asking for details, including seeing whatever photographs were taken at the scene. (The organization Parents of Murdered Children has developed a very effective protocol for viewing such photographs; see http://www.pomc.com/.)

Much of the work of grieving involves remembering – but when remembering produces only traumatic images such as yours, Ally, the value of remembering is lost. Specialists who work with trauma survivors tell us that effective grief work cannot begin until the trauma is dealt with first. If you’re still experiencing anxiety, sleeplessness, intrusive images and nightmares, I want to encourage you to seek the help of a trauma specialist – a therapist who understands that trauma work must be done before you can begin the grief work that lies before you, as you come to terms with this horrible death of your son. Go to the TRAUMATIC LOSS page on my GriefHealing Web site for a list of suggested resources.

In the meantime, please know that we are holding you are in our hearts and in our prayers.

Wishing you peace and healing,

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thankyou for your kind words .. it is now 11 weeks and I am still no closer to finding the answers I seek

I am not coping well with the feelings I am having .. I have never wanted to hurt anyone before .. I find myself hating the guy who was with my son which goes against everything I have ever believed in .. we have since found out that they jumped on the train AFTER my son fell on the track .. I still dont know what kiilled my son .. what injuries he had ..

im in kind of like a limbo .. everything happening round me and im not participating ..

people dont understand i can have a few good days then a few bad days .. its just so confusing .. im not sure im doing this grieving thing right .. geez i probably am not making a lot of sense ..

Im not sure I can do this anymore ..

I think the people on the train i catch to work think im nuts .. my boss doesnt understand that some days i just have to get off the train and have a break before continuing on to work

The train company paid for my sons funeral and i have heard all sorts of things that make me think there is something being hidden from me

I have been told im eligible for compensation but im not sure i want money for my sons life

the inquest was postponed .. so still i wait for answers

the rollercoaster gets better then speeds up again .. like i have no control anymore

well i have probably bored u all enough

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Guest Shannon

I am so sorry to hear of your unexpected and tragic loss. You are not nuts!!! I can't image anyone reacting differently!! I would definately encourage you to get after the people who OWE YOU the answers that you feel that you need. It sounds like you really need to hear what happened regardless of what it is they say.

I wish you peace and rest!!!

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7 months today I lost my son .. I dont think I can go on anymore ,.. I am struggling to even get out of bed for work .. my boss is giving me hell ... feels I have had enough time to "get over it" .. I cant do anything right .. dont even feel like doing the housework .. I just cant face tomorrow

All I can think about is going to see my darling son ..

user posted image

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I am sorry to hear that your work is not supporting you or thinks you should have had "enough time" I imagine every day is hard for you. My thoughts are with you. I hope that you have supportive friends to help you.

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the strangest thing happened today I was kind of coping up to now.. well living and breathing and appearing normal on the outside ..

our Australian govenrment in its wisdom is giving out a bonus of $600 to all eligible families for each child in their care.. so as any other parent I took my daughter out this morning to buy her a few extra bits and pieces .. went to the atm and to my surprise there was $1200 in there instead of $600 for one child..

organised what my daughter needed then came home to notify the authorities that they had overpaid me .. thats when I became unravelled .. told by them the other $600 was for my son .. okay this is going to sound crazy but how does getting $600 from your government turn a normally rational human being into a blubbering mess .. have cried so much today more probably than I have in the past .. the feeling of loss is deeper now than it has before and I have no idea why .. the depth of feeling has scared me soo much .. I need and want answers I still cannot get .. I stll really have no idea what actually killed my son ... his death certificate says death from multiple injuries.. I dont know where to go for answers and not really sure I want the answers .. feel like I am back on the damn rollercoaster .. I have friends who want to be there for me but I just cant explain how stupid I feel ..

its like I have suddenly woken up and realised he isnt coming home .. I miss him so much and it hurts so god damn much .. why the hell is there such a waste of life .. nothing seems fair ..

I am not sure I can do this for much longer .. I feel almost robotic .. going through the motions of life .. and yet staying cocconed in a state of numbness .. grrr that doesnt make sense but nothing seems to make sense ..

Ally

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My dear Ally,

My heart just aches for you -- but I'm so glad you came back to our Group to let all of us know how you are doing.

Please read the message I posted to you just above this one, in the Behaviors in Bereavement Forum (Topic: Is This Normal).

There is nothing we can say to take away this stabbing pain in your heart, Ally -- but we can tell you that you are not alone. We are here for you, and our thoughts and prayers are with you always.

Wishing you peace and healing,

Marty T

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HI and thanks Marty

I guess this forum allows me an anonymous outlet which I like ..

not sure if you can answer this but going to ask anyhow, because right now I am still going round in circles.. I am not sure if its normal but when i try and think of my son I find I sometimes can't it can become frustrating, not to a point where I dwell on it but I guess I feel that I am losing touch with him at times. I guess I am lucky in some ways to have a pretty positive outlook on this .. I know the sun will come up tomorrow and the world will continue to thrive

I am still a little torn in that I still dont know what actually killed Dan the man .. his death certificate says death from multiple injuries from being hit by a train.. I am still at times torn by wanting to know he didnt suffer or whether he was layinbg oin the tracks for the 3 hours alive and continually being run over by more trains .. I have so far been able to discount the imaginations but sometimes it becomes hard. Do I really want or need to know .. at times I am so positive that 'yes I do' at other times I dont think I want to I guess its a new kind of roller coaster.

Thanks again

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its 11.39pm on a sunday night here and once again i dread going to bed .. Sunday nights im beginning to hate .. I have this strange gripping feeling around my chest as if something so heavy is sitting on it .. everyone says time will heal i am not so sure anymore..

I am sending my daughter to my mums as I cannot be there for her .. I am not sure I can be here for me .. I have an extremely good friend who says he wants to be here for me .. but I am not sure I can cope letting someone else in ..

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My dear Ally,

I see from all your recent postings that you’ve had a really rough night, and I sincerely hope you found some relief by coming here . . .

I want to address some of the questions you’ve put to me in your message of June 26.

First of all, whatever you are feeling and experiencing as you come to terms with this awful death of your beloved son is normal, Ally – normal for you. There simply is no right or wrong way to do the work of grieving – there is only your way, and you must discover that for yourself. Don’t let anyone ever tell you that your reactions aren’t normal. They are what they are, and as the weeks, months and years go by, you must find your own way of dealing with them.

That said, I think it’s quite understandable that as time goes by you fear that you are losing touch with your son. Partly that is because you are in the process of learning how live without his physical presence in your life, yet still go on loving him in a very different way – loving him in his absence rather than in his presence. As Thomas Attig says,

The heart of grief, its most difficult challenge, is not "letting go" of those who have died but instead making the transition from loving in presence to loving in separation. -- Thomas Attig, in The Heart of Grief: Death and the Search for Lasting Love

You say you’re still “a little torn in that I still don’t know what actually killed Dan . . .” As I’ve said to you elsewhere, I think it’s only natural for you to want to know what actually happened to your boy. Read what this mother has to say about her own need to know why – in this case, wanting to know why her son decided to commit suicide:

For a long time I was obsessed with why Mitch had ended his life.

I thought that I needed to discover the real cause of his hopelessness.

I studied and analyzed what I believed to be his suicide note . . .

Finally, I perceived that a death by suicide is a result of factors too numerous to count.

I wanted to know why, but I didn't have to have an answer in order to go on living my own life.

Even the most experienced and astute investigators

are finally forced to make what at best is only an educated guess.

It is important, however, to ask why.

It is important to worry about why,

because one finally exhausts possibility after possibility

and ultimately one tires of the fruitless search.

Then it is time to let it go and to start healing.

-- Iris Bolton

in My Son...My Son: A Guide to Healing After a Suicide in the Family

Bolton Press.Com

I want to refer you to some resources that I think may offer you some additional comfort, Ally. Please at least check them out, and please continue to let us know how you’re doing.

These are the sites:

Another Reality: After-Death Communication

Dreaming Kevin: The Path to Healing (Book by Carla Blowey)

Love Never Dies: A Mother's Journey from Loss to Love by Sandy Goodman

Prayer Wave: After-Death Communication and Grief Support

It's Happening Again (Article by Sandy Goodman)

Finally, in response to your concerns about being there for your daughter and accepting help from your friend who wants to be there for you, I want to leave you with these words:

Now that I am gone,

remember me with smiles and laughter.

And if you need to cry,

cry with your brother or sister who walks in grief beside you.

And when you need me,

put your arms around anyone

and give to them what you need to give to me.

There are so many who need so much.

I want to leave you something --

something much better than words or sounds.

Look for me in the people I've known

or helped in some special way.

Let me live in your heart

as well as in your mind.

You can love me most

by letting your love reach out to our loved ones,

by embracing them and living in their love.

Love does not die, people do.

So, when all that's left of me is love,

give me away as best you can.

-- Author unknown

Wishing you peace and healing,

Marty T

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thankyou Janet

another Sunday has passed and another sleepless night endured

have decided this is all too hard .. the countdown has begun .. just dont think I want to do this anymore

everything is too hard .. getting up in the morning to even having a shower the house is a mess .. I just dont want to face another day .. time to stop this for good

Ally

To Laugh often and much .. to win the respect of INTELLIGENT people and the affection of children .. to earn the appreciation of HONEST critics and endure the betrayal of FALSE FRIENDS … to appreciate beauty .. to find the best in others .. to leave the world a bit of a better place .. whether by a healthy child .. a garden patch .. to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived .. This is to have succeeded .. Emerson

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Ally - I stumbled onto this website today for an entirely different reason, but knew I needed some help and "joined" a different group. But I have a heart that is broken and torn apart in so many places that I started reading a different group that also applies to me. I read your most recent post and wanted you know that my heart goes out to you.

I do not presume to know your pain except as you share it and I do not live your pain as you are experiencing it, but I know something of my own. All my children have died and I am not able to have any others. The circumstances of the deaths are different, and therefore our experiences of loss are different - but please know that I "hear" your overwhelming emotions in the very fiber of my being and they resonate with my own - and all that you write about are good things to share with others in a safe and thoughtful way....I wish I could help you by being "there" for you. I pray that maybe hearing a little of my story helps you to know that the loss of children is something that I have experienced as unbearable, also.

When I read your recent post, I know that I, too, cannot even get up the motivation to do simple housework - that each morning I wake up exhausted from not enough sleep. I know that I go through life but do not live my life any more. I don't know how to get through that, if one ever can. But even though not fair - it is the journey given to us, and we have to travel that path in the best way that we can at the time. It isn't for another to judge how we take the journey - it is ours alone.

My loss is not as recent or as raw as yours....but I know that each loss, each grieving is unique and different no matter what. How we experience our grief is not a reflection of how much we loved someone....and how much we mourn for ourselves is not the same with each passing, either. Each death of a loved one: my children, a friend, my beloved dog is different. One is not "worse" than another - perhaps my coping skills or strength were better one time than another. There isn't "one" way, there isn't "one" experience. It all has to do with so many different things - all we can do is try to find our way through a life that makes no sense the best that we can.

I think perhaps you and I are at similiar points of despair and anger and hurt and frustration. For myself, I think the time has come to where I need to have not a close friend or family member, but rather someone who is NOT close (and does know about grief) to help me. Maybe we can each try that, and then compare notes with one another as to what works for each of us, this time?

I know that family and friends and strangers MAY mean well - but geez. I have heard it all, and maybe you have too. Sometimes, inside myself, I just want to yell at them: don't you have a clue how hurtful/harmful/insensitive what you are saying to me is?!!! But we don't. We go through the motions somehow because we are supposed to, and we keep our agony safe where the clueless people can't hurt us even more in our vulnerabilty. Or, we explode or go crazy....Maybe you too feel the intensity never lessens?

If so, maybe you, too, feel a little like I do - that it is time to have the safeness and anonyminity of a caring, but trained, professional to guide us through the next steps?

Don't give up at this point - but maybe it is time to reach out. It does no honor to our children or loved ones to toss our lives away, also. We honor them by sharing love with others as we are able, and by accepting love when we need it. It's all we can do - just put one foot in front of another, even on the darkest days and the most despairing nights.

I wish you rest and relief at this time that you most need it.

Yours in loss,

Clara's mom

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I am not sure how much more I can bear - its over 12 months now .. but today I received a phone call .. asking me to come home as my father has been diagnosed with a virulent form of cancer and he is not expected to last a week - to top it off my father has asked if he can be buried with my son -

I told my father that was fine with me but I wont be going to the funeral - you see I havent been back to my sons grave and not sure I have the strength to go back at the same time as burying my father

the world kind of sucks right now - I really am not sure I have the strength to get back on the roller coaster ride again -

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Like a twinkling star your eyes light up the

Endless and black sky

Like a Rainbow with it’s beautiful colours

Your smile makes this a more beautiful place to be

How can it be that something as sparkling and bright as you

Just in one day could turn my world dark and grey

You were born to amuse and inspire others around you

Born to make people around you to laugh

God made you so that the world could see

The true beauty of life

You gave me so much joy in this life

I will always be grateful for all that you gave me

For the strength and for always being there for me

You touched my heart in a way that no one ever has

I was blessed having you here with me

Sometimes I wonder if you still would remember me

If I saw you in Heaven

Would you still smile at me

Embrace me with your strong warm arms

Hold me and comfort me

Would you whisper sweet words in my ears

Tell me that I am the only one

Would you kiss my tears away

Would you take me in your arms and hold me

Until I fell asleep

So many things on my mind that

I want you to know

Can you hear me my love

Can you hear this prayer

My desperation

My pain

These words that I wrote for you…

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well here I am again like a bad penny

have been waking in these early hours with nightmares - my son is all broken and I cannot fix him - my throat is dry from screaming and the sweat is cold - I am not sure I can keep doing this anymore

have so many crazy thought of jumping on a train track and seeing how long it take for me to die

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Oh my dear Ally,

Of course there are no words that any of us can offer that will take away your pain, save to say that we are so very, very sorry and we are all here for you, aching with you, crying with you, screaming at the heavens with you, holding you with gentle and caring thoughts.

I know that the second anniversary of your son’s tragic death is fast approaching. Having been through this last year at this time, I’m sure you already know that as this day draws near, it is only natural for you to be especially preoccupied with thoughts and memories and details of this horrible event. This anniversary date is an enormous trigger which only intensifies the acute and chronic pain you’ve been experiencing all along. I pray that you won’t take this to mean that you are losing ground, because the progress you have made is real. I pray that all of us who grieve beside you will remember that, although we cannot choose what life has to offer, we can choose how to respond. The attitudes we bring to life’s circumstances are always, always within our control. We can choose to give up and give in, or we can choose to take charge of our lives and keep moving forward.

I hope that as you think of your precious son, you will think of happy as well as sad memories, and hold onto the happy ones. The happiness you experienced with your son belongs to you forever. I also hope that as this second year draws to a close, you will plan some sort of a memorial ritual, no matter how private or how small. You can draw on those familiar, comforting ceremonies and activities unique to your religion, culture, traditions, family or way of life. You might use this ritual as your rite of passage through grieving to healing, to mark a shift in the way you mourn, or as an official end to this second year of mourning. However you decide to spend it, I hope you will build comfort and meaning into this special day, and immerse yourself in the healing power of remembrance.

Please know that we care and we are thinking of you, Ally, especially this July 14 – and please continue to let all of us know how you are doing.

Wishing you peace and healing,

Marty T

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I haven't lost a son - I have gained a network of appreciation for a life cut short

I haven't lost a son - I have learnt he lives on in so many others

I haven't lost a son - I have gained numerous friends

Today his mates held a memorial for him - attended by about 182 people from all walks of life

the topics of speeches ranged from his awesome ability to make people smile, to his ability to turn the tables on something bad.

I guess I never realised how much of an impact he had on people, for one so young he certainly brightened an awful lot of lives

I haven't lost a son I have gained an insight into how the world was turned by a cherub.

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