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Employees Bring Comfort After Boy’s Bike Spill

(l to r) Signalman John Kroft, Foreman James Lyons and Signalman Andrew Robb helped a St. Marys, ON, boy after he fell riding his bicycle. Jesse Bouwman, 6, was back on his bike after PNR RailWorks employees bandaged the knee he’d injured after taking a spill near their worksite.

The actions of some PNR RailWorks employees inspired a grateful mom to turn to the Internet to ensure her appreciation was widely known.

“I'm not sure who to write to,” begins the note from Michelle Bouwman.  “I obtained the contact information from your website. I feel compelled to write to you to share what happened today.”

We’re glad she did, or we might not have known that Signals & Communications Foreman James Lyons and signalmen John Kroft and Andrew Robb had come to the aid of her children.

“My kids, aged 13, 11 and 6, went out for a bike ride today” Michelle continued. “On their way home, my youngest son was hurt. His bike wheel got caught in the railroad tracks, and he fell down and scraped his knee pretty bad.”

That’s when our employees, who were installing a centralized traffic control system on about 90 miles of track on VIA Rail’s Guelph Subdivision in southwestern Ontario, stepped in to help. Part of the Guelph Sub runs between London and Stratford, near the children’s home in St. Marys. Andrew grabbed a first aid kit from his truck, and James ran for water and paper towels so John could clean and bandage 6-year-old Jesse’s wound. James had Jesse’s older sister use his cell phone to notify their mother, and the men stayed with the children until their mother arrived.

“I am very grateful to ... these men for coming to the aid of my kids,” Michelle wrote.  “Our family just moved to St. Marys the beginning of July, and since, we have fallen in love with this town and all of its welcoming people. Today was another example of just how lucky we are to call St. Marys our new home.”

And to those of us working at RailWorks, Michelle’s story was another example of our employees getting involved to help others. We congratulate John, James and Andrew for adding to the Bouwmans’ warm welcome with a favorable impression of PNR RailWorks.