Medicine: New Year's Tale

A severed leg is rejoined

On the afternoon of New Year's Eve, Elizabeth McFadden, 11, and her sister Alice, 12, were playing near their home in Central Islip, N.Y., when two youths accosted them, demanding money. Alice fled over some Long Island Rail Road tracks. Halfway across, Elizabeth saw a train bearing down on her, tried to turn back and stumbled. Her right leg was severed just above the knee by the wheels.

Elizabeth was more fortunate than most victims of such accidents. An off-duty ambulance volunteer, Vincent Cascio, who happened to be near...

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