12:00 PM EST, January 25, 2012
Anna Beninati is the teenager who lost her legs when she tried to hop on board a train and it went disastrously wrong.
Now she's talking for the first time about the accident that triggered a horrific 911 call.
She's proving that you don't have to let a tragedy destroy your life.
17-year-old co-ed Beninati was in Longmont, Colorado with three friends.
They decided to get back to Colorado State University in Fort Collins by hopping a freight train, the kind of perilous stunt you see in YouTube videos.
"It was so fast," Beninati tells a local reporter, "I have vivid memories of the whole thing."
Beninati says one of her friends leaped onto the train without any problem. A second friend then tried to get aboard but tripped and fell. He rolled away safely.
Beninati says that's when she got a gut feeling that trouble was looming.
"I remember watching that happen and thinking. Something tells me that I shouldn't start running right now," says Beninati.
But Beninati went ahead and tried anyway and disaster struck.
"I run, grab the train. Got my right leg up on the train and my left leg was dragging on the ground. Ended up bouncing on the rocks underneath the train. And I got sucked in. And the next thing I knew I was watching my legs get crushed by the coal cars," says Beninati.
A motorist who happened to be a paramedic was stopped at the train crossing, saw what happened and called 911.
Beninati lost both her legs.
Now released from the hospital, she attended a ceremony to honor the emergency service workers who saved her life that terrible day.
She's even learning to ski on specially designed equipment.
Although she's upbeat, her words should haunt anyone thinking of ever trying a stunt like this.
Beninati said of the incident, "We're teenagers and we're indestructible, right?"