“I’m not going to be bedridden.” After the accident, he became the European champion, marathon runner and triathlete
Photo: ANJA NIEDRINGHAUS / EPA / PAP
He heard these terrible words, which he could not and would not believe, in the hospital. “You will not train any more.” He took a risk – to sport, the professional one, he returned very quickly, although he knew that he was playing with fire. And it didn’t stop anymore. After the end of his career, Paweł Januszewski started with long runs, and on June 12 he made his debut in the triathlon, i.e. the struggle of people of iron.
He had always liked to drive a car, it calmed him down and relaxed him. He never had a crash, no unpleasant events. And that day he hit a dog. Distressed, he asked Wojtek to switch behind the wheel. They moved on, after a dozen or so kilometers, they stood in front of a closed railroad crossing. Peace and quiet, nothing foreshadowed the tragedy.
Januszewski says: – It was a long time ago. So long ago that I don’t remember the exact date. I wanted to forget about it as soon as possible. I don’t look back, the here and now is important to me. I used to pass through the scene of the accident quite often. And nothing, I felt absolutely nothing. No trauma. In addition, the area has been rebuilt, I probably would not recognize it, because now I rarely go there.
Scream, chaos, ambulance signal
On September 23, 1997, this day was erased from memory for years.
Słutowo, Recz commune. A clear, warm evening. Januszewski and Wojtek – brother-in-law, sister’s husband – stop in front of a closed barrier. The train is not in sight yet. They are waiting, talking about nothing important. Boredom.
Read without limits
Access this article and other special content. Free