British Columbia

Wife of horse rider hit by train says 'it's completely amazing' her husband survived

"All he said is, 'I just woke up and I don't know where I am,' and then he hung up the phone on me, and I knew instantly that something was drastically wrong."

'I kept telling him ... I said, 'I don't know how you're still here'

Jordan Camille is recovering in hospital from a severe concussion, a lacerated kidney and a broken shoulder. (Submitted by Candice Camille)

Saturday night, Jordan Camille, a contracted range rider for the Tk'emlups Indian Band, got a call right before dark about three horses that were spotted in the Kamloops area that were distressed and starving.

 "They thought they were trapped," said his wife Candice Camille.

He made a plan to look for them first thing Sunday morning.

"He went out in a blizzard to try and bring in horses that he knew were going to probably die if he didn't."

In whiteout conditions, Jordan found one horse in an area between the Thompson River and the CN Rail tracks. He called his wife to tell her he was trying to figure out a way to capture the horse and get her in a trailer.

Twenty-five minutes later, Jordan called Candice back. 

"All he said is, 'I just woke up and I don't know where I am,' and then he hung up the phone on me, and I knew instantly that something was drastically wrong."

Camille called 911 immediately and tried to give them a general description of the area he was in.

Both Jordan and Candice Camille are passionate horse trainers. They have 14 of their own horses. (Submitted by Candice Camille)

"I just kept telling [them] to find the horse, because I thought if Jordan is lying down in the snow nobody is going to find him," she said.

Camille got in her car and went to look for him. When she saw emergency crews and the train stopped, she began to piece together what had happened.

While riding his horse, Rory, Jordan was hit by a train. Rory died, but Jordan survived.

He is now recovering in the hospital from a severe concussion, a broken shoulder and a lacerated kidney.

"From the bigger picture it is minor and it's completely amazing to have him here," said the mother of three boys.

The Camille's five-year-old son, Hunter, had a close bond with Rory, pictured. (Submitted by Candice Camille)

"When I saw where Rory was and to turn and look at Jordan still being there ... I kept telling him, I said, 'I don't know how you're still here, like Rory is under the train.'"

The couple still hasn't been able to piece together how Jordan ended up on the train tracks, she told CBC's Courtney Dickson.

Camille said the last thing her husband remembers is that his plan was to guide the horse he was saving and travel parallel to the highway because there is an underground tunnel that leads to some corrals.

He told her he tucked his head to block the snow and the next thing he knew, he was in the intensive care unit. 

RCMP say they were notified at 10:35 a.m. Sunday morning that a Canadian National Railways train had struck a horse and rider in the Devick Road area and that the rider had been taken to the hospital to be treated for injuries. 

'Rory is a hero'

Both Jordan and Candice are passionate horse trainers, with 14 horses of their own. 

Six-year-old Rory was one of the first horses they got.

"He meant a lot to us and my son," said Camille.

Their five-year-old, Hunter, had a particularly strong bond with Rory, claiming him as his own when he was younger.

Rory was always very careful with Hunter and her other sons, she said.

"They know that Rory is a hero and that Rory is gone because he saved Jordan's life."

With files from Courtney Dickson


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