John W. Aguiar saved Daniel L. Ratcliff from being killed by a train, Dorchester, Massachusetts, March 4, 1961. Daniel, 6, and two other boys, 8 and 10, respectively, were on a railroad bridge when a freight train approached at 25 m.p.h. The older boys ran from the bridge calling to Daniel to follow. Aguiar, 28, locomotive fireman, noticed Daniel still on the bridge 300 feet away and told the engineer to apply the brakes, which he did. Aguiar left the cab and ran along a catwalk to the front end of the locomotive. Grasping the guardrail, Aguiar swung himself around the end of it and down four feet onto a foot-board at the front of the engine. The locomotive, traveling at 10 m.p.h., then was within 40 feet of Daniel, who had fallen between the rails just past the end of the bridge. Aguiar held to a grab-iron on the front of the engine, leaned as far forward as possible, and extended his arm. As he was carried to within reaching distance of Daniel, who then was partially erect, Aguiar thrust his arm outward violently. His hand caught Daniel and swept him from the path of the engine, which stopped 200 feet beyond him. Daniel suffered only bruises.
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