UPDATE: Teen Didn't See Train Coming


POSTED: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 - 10:05am

UPDATED: Friday, June 17, 2011 - 3:34am

UPDATE:  11:04 a.m. Updated reports indicate 14-year-old Justin Alcantar, an Ernesto Serna middle school student, was walking home with his back to a westbound train and playing with a basketball. Apparently the teen did not see nor hear the train approaching. He failed to get off the track before he was struck and killed by the Union Pacific train headed west towards El Paso. Alcantar died at the scene. No charges are expected to be filed in the incident. Early indications are the teen's music player and head set were wrapped up in his pocket.

SOCORRO- Tragedy in Socorro tonight.  A teenager is hit and killed by a train and now his family mourns, and wonders how it could happen.

Justin Alcantar was a 14 year-old outfielder on his school's baseball team.  Police say he was walking home from a friends house, crossing the tracks, as the Union Pacific train came towards him.

Despite the train blaring it's horn, Justin didn't get off the tracks in time.

Jesse Espino was Justin Alcantar's best friend.  They were hanging out Monday afternoon.  Justin left to go home around 5:00 p.m.

"Ten minutes passed and my aunt called my mom and said that the train had hit a kid and when my mom told me, I just had a feeling it was him," Espino said.

At 5:07 p.m. Justin Alcantar was hit by a westbound train, according to police.  Reports say he was dribbling a basketball near the tracks.

As the train came toward him, the conductor told police he blared his horn several times, a desperate effort to get Justin to move.  But by the time Justin looked up, it was too late.

"You don't want to believe it at first, but then I saw tears in people's eyes and I had to come running," said Hector Gloria, a friend of Justin's.

Neighbors and friends lined police tape Monday, comforting one another in the first moments after it happened.  Many in tears, but a few smiles, remembering a young man who they say always shared a smile.

The small community is left to grieve and wonder how this tragedy happened to one of their own.

"I don't know, that it couldn't be him.  That it wasn't possible.  How could my best friend be gone?" Jesse Espino said.

Speed was not a factor in Justin's death.  Socorro police say the train was going under the speed limit when the crash happened.  They say it's just a terrible accident.

Comments News Comments

Only God and himself know what really happened! Stop making up stories about this young boy, if he didn't hear the train, if he commited suicide,etc,etc, why don't we just get together and pray! Pray the Lord for his family because Justin is not with them anymore and the least we could do is help with our prayers instead of making our own conclusions. His family is in very deeply pain specially his mom who is left with the worse pain that could ever exist. RIP Justin Alcantar u will be missed.

i wish i could go back in time nd save him but that aint possible i have only met justin once but when i saw him he seamed like a cool friend 2 have but know he is gone nd my heart is in peices i luv uu justin may uu rest in peice=,[
i am sorry 2 all his friends nd family he was a cool person not cool but great always there when uu need friend we miss uu justin uu will always be in my heart

What happened is horrible for everyone, the family that has to live with losing a child, and the conductor and enginers on the train, who have to live with this for the rest of their lives. I wonder if an autopsy has been ordered.

u seriuz? an autopsy?? the kid was hit by a train, wat do u think happened? he bounced off and hit da gravel? i dont think soo.. the only thing that survived the hit was his backpack and basketball, which were returned to his mother after the scene and investigations.

-r.i.p Justin alcantar U will be missed.... we <3 U&always will we will alwais be here.U were not only a friend, buddy, son or a student,U were an anqel.when the heavens then needed UR help U leave us in pain knowinq UR not with us no more but UR watchinq over us rememberinq the first time U said Hi we <3U dont U forqeht tha&watever wenever U need us stop by&visit let us <3ed ones&friends know that U havent 4qot bout us..):
-RestInPeace Justin<3

i jzt kould say that justin was a very good friend and he always had a smile on his face we are gonna miss him so much and we love him so much eventough he is NOT with us but we are still gonna havehim in our hearts he would never be forgiven in this skool we love you justin WE ARE NEVER GONNA FORGIVE YOU,YOU WOULD ALWAYS BE IN OUR HEARTS AND KNOW WITHOUT YOU IS NOT THE SAME AS WHEN YOU WERE WITH US WE LLOVE YOU &BE HAPPY IN YOUR NEW WORLD

The union pacific railroad does speed at the tracks and "IF" the conductor blew the horn it must of been at the time he saw the 14 year old. The young boy would of had a chance to move away from the tracks if the train was 200 or 300 feet away. It is what the conductor is telling the Police, no cameras to see this horrific accident.

Okay fist of all it wasn't suicide.. I'm another friend of his.. He was happy that day.. He got commended on both his math and reading.. He was excited to tell his mom about the news.. He was just distracted and shocked.. I don't know why you all put stupid stuff on here.. Grow up and get a life.. Stop putting wrong and unresponsive things on here.. Its a really sad tradegy.. And you put ugly stuff.. Lmao.. Wow.. KEEP OFF..

Justin was my nephew and he was a very out going kid who would speak his mind about anything. I dont understand how or why it happen. There is only one person that knows why and if there was a reason and that is god. I ask myself every nite since this happen. You could feel the trembling blocks away I am pretty sure that mayb he did feel it. He was not wearing his head phones so enough of that. Why it happen and if it was a suicide? No one knows you can opinion about it but dont make a differenc

people should just let it go what ever happen happened and theirs no way of really telling why or how. the only thing known was this poor kid died a horrible death and thats all. just leave it alone already I'm tried having to here all these thing that he committed suicide and all this death is nothing to be made fun of especially from a kid you didn't even had the chance to know.. next time think about what people would say if something like this happens to you then see if its funny or not

Well I cannot explain with words how terrible this accident was just by the fact that his family are passing through the toughest time of their lives. His family must have faight and see the positive things that whether if it was an accident or not he is in a better place. This is a lesson to all the peolpe because this teach us that you never know when your time is comming. We must know that life is to short and thatwemust enjoy our family and friends every day until thetime forleavingcomestous

I believe he had too much turmoil in his life and he was done with all the responsibility. It looks like a suicide to me. We should concentrate on less TAKS teaching and more intervention programs to help our youth deal better with stressfull situations. I agree with Jordan 23 who cannot hear a train miles away? Cops should look into it more. may he RIP

Come one Socorro PD! Investigate like real cops who get paid to do their job! This obviously doesn't make any sense. Calling this an accident sounds very ignorant and makes the PD sound lazy and unprofessional. I use to live very close to these tracks with my parents. The train is always plenty loud and there is an unmistakenable rumble, like another person has mentioned; even from 250 yards away, which is where my parents live.

I believe he did it on purpose I mean who can't hear the trains horn I know what they sound like and anyone can hear from a mile away. He probaly was bullied or something cause the train honked 4 times and you would be able to see the train. No earplugs could resist the sound of a trains horn out.

This is a horrible thing. But this story does not make sense. how does he not hear the train did he even want to avoid the train. The cops should investigate if he was ever bullied or something bad like that.

May he rest in peace and may God help his family deal with his passing.

its really sad and all my respect to all his family its hard to believe that he is no longer here wit us.i didn't meet him in person but we did talk on Facebook);R.I.P Justin

i have lived very close by the train tracks, and let me tell you the horn of the train is LOUD, plus when i was in high school, and i walked home i can feel the ground trempling, not much but enough to know it was a train. Have you think about a suicide? even with music in your ears you can feel and hear the horn and train coming. i wonder how he was ever bulled, harased, or mistreated at home? "cops" should really investigate this event? and here is my question, did he ignore the horn? GBY FAM

we loved him so much from the whole school may rest in peace.......WE MISS YOU!!!!!!!!

If the bells were going off and the train sounded the horn, then only one thing could have happened....its like driving and talking on a cell phone or texting on a phone...its called "earplugs" from an ipod perhaps? Kind of like someone with very loud music coming from their car. Can't hear a dang thing. I'll put my money on the ipod.

its very sad but you can't blame the train how can u not hear or see it...its a tragedy that should not have happened

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