Exclusive: Boy Scout Isaac Berken on Amtrak crash


(NewsNation) — Boy Scout Isaac Berken played a major rescue role in helping passengers escape a derailed Amtrak train crash.

The 15-year-old said being a Boy Scout helped him learn how to control himself and remain calm, especially in stressful situations.

“One thing I really tried to do, if it was impossible for someone to get out of the train, was just to console them and comfort them,” Isaac said Tuesday night during an appearance on NewsNation’s “Banfield.”

Issac, who was traveling with his Wisconsin-based Boy Scout troop on the Amtrak headed from Los Angeles to Chicago, sprang to action to assist people who were injured or needed help after the train struck a truck on the tracks, killing four people.

Fear gripped Sarah Berken, Isaac’s mother, when she heard her son was involved in an Amtrak derailment in Missouri. When she finally heard him, that fear turned to pride.

“Initially, it was absolute fear until we were able to get in touch with him; he lost his phone when the train crashed,” Sarah Berken said. “We did not hear his voice until about an hour later and then at that point, we confirmed that all of our troop was accounted for.”

Another Boy Scout in the troop, a 15-year-old boy, comforted and held the hand of the truck driver as he died. Actions of all the boys who did what they could to aide others during the disaster made their parents proud.

“We’re super proud of our boys, super proud of our adult leaders. They did what they have trained to do and they didn’t hesitate. they instinctively jumped into action and did what they could to help other people,” Sarah said.

Parents of the Scouts have still been trying to arrange transportation for the children to return home to Wisconsin from Mendon, Missouri, where the derailment occurred.

“We are feeling much more confident that we will see them soon,” Sarah added.

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