Tuesday, April 04, 2006

No Bucks But No Boston

I am still very upset but I ran into some nice people here in Wheeling, West Virginia who fed me and allowed me to sleep today.

That was helpful since I was awake most of last night.

I will be staying at a shelter and leaving tomorrow. I will probably hitchhike out since it doesn't look likely that I'll be able to cross this State any other way.

With the money gone, everything has changed.

Read the comment left at the bottom of one of my audioposts.

At least I didn't meet that particular fate!!!!

After reading the comment, I am even more convinced that Boston has a curse on it.

I walked by that very place several times every day that I was in Boston!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Many stories have appeared on Monday's construction accident near St. Francis House... this is one of amazing survival. Shown on TV the tiny ledge was invisible from the ground.

Boston Herald
Heroes save mason stranded on ledge
By Laurel J. Sweet
Tuesday, April 4, 2006 - Updated: 12:29 PM EST

Michael Steigerwald, 41, of Littleton, a seasoned carpenter for Canton-based Sunrise Erectors, was installing exterior paneling on the roof of Emerson College’s Boylston Street dormitory yesterday with co-workers Tom Page and Bob Fuller when, in 10 tension-fraught minutes, they were called upon to be heroes. Here, Steigerwald tells the Herald’s Laurel J. Sweet the unforgettable tale of how they saved the life of a Bostonian Masonry worker whose name was the only thing Steigerwald didn’t catch.

“We were on the roof - essentially the 15th floor right above the lift that toppled over. We actually noticed that it was starting to teeter-totter. I said something to (Page and Fuller) like, ‘Look, I think the wind’s got it.’ And it went right over. It was surreal.

“We ran to the corner of the roof and looked down. Obviously, it was awful. It was at that time we saw this other kid sitting on what we thought was a window ledge. It’s approximately 5 inches deep. He was sitting there with his back to the wall. He was probably 15 feet or so below us. He said in a calm, quiet voice, ‘Help me.’

“He had just told me the other day he was working nights, long hours, he missed his kids. He took Saturday off to take his wife out for their anniversary.

“We ran down two flights of stairs to the 13th floor. There was a very small hole in the wall through which I could see his back and his sweatshirt. I was able to reach through the hole and put my hand on his shoulder. I told him, ‘I’m right behind you. Just hang on a minute, we’re going to pull you through.’ He watched his two friends die. He must have seen the whole thing from the ledge.”

As Steigerwald secured the mason with just the strength of his fist, Page fed an 8-foot-long chain through the hole so the mason would be tethered if the ledge or the wall gave way. Then, Page and Fuller set about carving a 2-foot-high hole in the sheet rock to his right using only utility knives and household hammers, as others ran to assist in the miracle rescue.

“We had a good hold on him and he was calm. I was not thinking we were going to lose him. He leaned to his right and we were able to reach under his arms - almost like a full nelson - and we dragged him right through. He obviously was very shaken. He wasn’t saying much. He wanted to get up at one point, but we asked him to stay there.”

Steigerwald said he and the mason became separated as the mason’s friends surrounded and comforted him.

“I saw him later down in the alley. I asked him how he got out on the ledge and he said he didn’t know. He couldn’t remember. He said, ‘God was with me today,’ and then he broke down and cried.

“The shock hasn’t worn off. I’m sure as I reflect on this I’ll realize we were just lucky to be there to get him in. I’m just awesomely happy for him.”