Cancer patient killed by train

AN ELDERLY cancer patient was struck down and killed by a train in Essex, an inquest heard yesterday.

James Hore

AN ELDERLY cancer patient was struck down and killed by a train in Essex, an inquest heard yesterday.

Captain Ramsay McLaren was suffering from the illness and went missing from his Manningtree home in October 2008, Chelmsford Coroners' Court was told.

The 82-year-old's wife reported her husband missing to Essex Police just before 8am the morning of October 27 but the pensioner had been in collision with a train about two hours before.

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The jury inquest at County Hall, Chelmsford heard Capt McLaren was a “very determined person” and once he made his mind up to do something, he would stick to it.

However, train driver Graham Corn told the inquest the pensioner, who was in his dressing gown, had a “startled look” as the train approached him at Wrabness Station, near Harwich.

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Mr Corn, who was in his cab with manager Russell Simmons, applied emergency breaking but there was nothing that could be done to avoid the collision.

They said Capt McLaren “made no attempt” to get out of the way and was killed by the train.

A post-mortem showed the pensioner died from multiple injuries and had nothing untoward in his toxicology readings.

Essex Coroner's Officer, Paul Gammon, said: “He was seen on the railway track at Wrabness station in Harwich looking towards an oncoming train and made no attempt to move.

“The train applied emergency breaks and Mr McLaren was struck by the train and sadly passed away.”

A jury of five men and five women were given three options as verdicts - suicide, accidental death or an open verdict.

They returned a majority verdict of accidental death.

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