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Ramon Morales, a police officer with the Richmond Police Department in Texas, pulls a woman from an oncoming freight train in an image taken from video. (Staff)
Some Marine Corps training will stick with you for life — and sometimes, it will help save a life.
Ramon Morales, a police officer with the Richmond Police Department in Texas, pulled a woman from an oncoming freight train last month. The Marine veteran said he credits his quick action to the training he received while in the Corps.
“I didn’t think about it, I just reacted,” Morales told Marine Corps Times.” The Marine Corps puts you in a position to think about others before you.”
Morales, a former corporal who served as an aircraft rescue and firefighting specialist, recently joined the police department. At about 1 a.m. on June 22, he said he was wrapping up a call at a bar and was sitting in a parking lot when a person there flagged him down.
He was told there was a distraught woman sitting on nearby train tracks, and he sped off to help.
Video captured from his police car shows him arriving at the tracks just as the crossing bells and lights went on, and as the vehicle barriers fall into place. He ran out of his car and pulled a sobbing woman to safety — just seconds before an oncoming freight train rolled by with its horn blaring.
When his sergeant and fellow Marine vet, Danny Roach, saw the footage, he said Morales needed to be recognized for his action. Roach said the department posted the video to their Facebook page to show other Marines and civilians that at any time, one can be called upon to help others.
“Officer Morales shows esprit de corps throughout his personal and professional life,” Roach said. “Officer Morales is a proud Marine, and I feel that his actions needs the attention of the Marines Corps. This video shows the type of individuals the Marines send into the civilian world.”
Since the 44-second video was posted to the Richmond Police Department’s Facebook in late June, it has been “liked” almost 15,000 times. Morales, who is being heralded as a hero in many of the comments, said he appreciates the accolades, but was just doing his job.
He is, however, using his moment in the spotlight to encourage people — including Marines — to help prevent suicide. When somebody seems to want to hurt themselves, deep down they really don’t, and it’s important to step in and assist them, he said.
Morales served in the Marine Corps from 2006 to 2011. He deployed twice: once to Iraq in 2008 and again to Afghanistan in 2011. He joined the Richmond Police Department in August.