Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Torment of Boy Survivor ; Grief: Emergency Workers Help Relatives of the Crash Dead at Las Palmas Airport on Gran Canaria, the Doomed Jets Destination. above, the Planes Tailfin Sticks out of the Ground near Barajas Airport, Madrid. A Wing Section Lies in the Foreground

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Torment of Boy Survivor ; Grief: Emergency Workers Help Relatives of the Crash Dead at Las Palmas Airport on Gran Canaria, the Doomed Jets Destination. above, the Planes Tailfin Sticks out of the Ground near Barajas Airport, Madrid. A Wing Section Lies in the Foreground

Article excerpt

Byline: TIM WORDEN

A BOY of eight survived the Madrid air crash in which his father was killed and his mother left in a coma.

Alfredo Acosta Mendiola was pulled from the burning wreckage of the Spanair jet crying for his parents.

But his Colombian-born father Alfredo Acosta Sierra, 60, was one of the 153 to be killed, and his mother Gregoria Mendiola Rodriguez, 45, was today fighting for her life.

Alfredo was being treated for a bro-ken leg in the Nino Jesus hospital in Madrid. His mother is in a coma in another hospital.

A rescue worker called Maria today said Alfredo was crying out for his parents as he was taken to hospital.

She told Spanish TV: He was very together, complaining about some pain, but what most worried him was finding his parents.

Two other children besides Alfredo survived the crash. One was an 11-year-old girl with a broken leg and the other a six-year-old boy with seri-ous head injuries.

Maria said the girl was also asking constantly for her mother, who she identified as Amaya.

Their survival astonished emer-gency services who were confronted with a scene from hell. Only 19 people survived. They were being treated in hospital today as Spain started three days of mourning.

It was revealed today that the Mcdonnell Douglas MD82 plane had an overheating fault fixed minutes before it caught on fire and plunged to the ground. Officials from Spanair said it was overheating in an air intake valve before a first attempt at take-off and was fixed before the sec-ond attempt but they said it was unclear if that caused the crash.

Beatriz Reyes Ojeda told how she walked away from the disaster with little memory of what happened. She told her sister Laura: I noticed some-thing was wrong with the plane. The other memory is that I lifted my head up and the plane had no roof. …

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