St. Paul, MN personal injury lawyer John D. Magnuson talks about a memorable amputation case in which he helped his client transition from being a railroad worker, to his dream job, a railroad conductor.
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Unfortunately, I’ve had to represent a number of folks with serious amputation injuries over my career including a number of individuals that have lost more than one limb at the same time. One of the ones I remember is I had a young man from Oregon who was a switchman and cars came in and he wasn’t warned that the cars were coming in. He was performing an operation called buckling air hoses, so he’s between the cars. He gets run over and he loses one leg at the knee and another one up at just below the hip. His father was a high official for the railroad at the time and they said, we’ll take care of you, we’ll take care of you. Well, three years later the statute of limitations is about to go and the father had moved on to another railroad, and they didn’t take care of him.
Well, we ended up putting the case together and ended up with at that time the largest settlement ever on the railroad for that type of injury. And in fact, this young man wanted to be an engineer, that was his dream and the railroad had said if you can get yourself up on a locomotive, walk down the platform and put yourself in the engineers’ seat, we’ll make you a locomotive engineer. He did that and then they wouldn’t make him a locomotive engineer. Well, luckily, we were able to get him enough of a settlement he bought his own railroad and today he is still a locomotive engineer in southern Minnesota where he has his own conductor. And the conductor helps him and does the work but he is a licensed locomotive engineer and still living his dream.