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THE NATION

Log Collapse Survivor Back at Texas A&M

August 28, 2001|From Associated Press

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — The worst-injured survivor of the Texas A&M bonfire collapse returned to campus Monday almost two years after he was pinned under the fallen logs.

John Comstock, 21, began the school year Monday with a business math class. It follows a long road to recovery, including surgery and months of intensive physical therapy. Comstock's left leg was amputated below the knee and he is partly paralyzed.

"I want to get on with being a regular college student," said Comstock, a biomedical sciences major.

Twelve Aggies died in November 1999 in the collapse of the log tower, built as part of traditional festivities leading up to the annual Texas A&M-University of Texas football game. A commission blamed flawed construction techniques and lack of supervision of students assembling the stack.

Comstock, a freshman at the time, was trapped in the debris for seven hours and was hospitalized until April 2000. But he hasn't lost his enthusiasm for the bonfire tradition, which the school hopes to revive in November 2002 after developing a "forever safe" plan.

He has a bonfire tattoo on his shoulder and plans to hang a picture of a log stack in his dorm room.

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