RTD’s light rail heroes: all in a day’s work

Every day, RTD frontline employees are put in the situation of protecting customers by safely navigating massive vehicles through traffic and on rail tracks. There are times, however, when RTD employees find themselves in the position of having to rise above the norm and make courageous decisions that can transform them into heroes. Actions that can change someone’s day or even save their life. Light Rail operators Oree Broomfield and Janet Tafoya each found themselves in that extraordinary situation while on their shifts operating trains recently.   

Recently, Oree Broomfield was operating the H Line, approaching Dayton Station when he noticed something disturbing. A young girl was running and screaming in distress.

Oree Broomfield
Oree Broomfield, Light Rail Operator

Broomfield became concerned because as he approached the station, the young girl came dangerously close to the tracks and he saw she was being chased by a man. He stopped the train and instructed the girl, who Broomfield said appeared no older than 10, to hide safely in the cab of his train. He locked her in his cab and tried to calm her until the police arrived. Once police arrived, they took the man into custody and brought the young girl to the hospital for examination. 

Broomfield said he would have done what he did to protect a child in any situation, regardless of whether he was operating the train that day.  

Janet Tafoya
Janet Tafoya, Light Rail Operator

Janet Tafoya’s quick actions also made a heroic difference in someone’s life. While operating the W Line one Friday night in March, Tafoya saw an unresponsive person at Federal Center Station. She immediately contacted EMS and what happened next saved a life. With the help of a nearby customer, who also rushed to the aid of the unresponsive person, the two jumped into action. Tafoya instructed the other person, who did not know CPR, on how to administer CPR. She knew time was of the essence to ensure the person received care while waiting for emergency services to arrive. She coached the assisting customer up until the moment EMS arrived on the scene. 

Her actions went above and beyond what is expected as an operator and many would say were heroic. Tafoya’s supervisor said she remained level-headed the entire time, which showed a lot of strength of character for her to remain calm and take charge in such a stressful situation.  

Broomfield and Tafoya are just two examples of RTD employees who are making lives better through connections. Their heroism and level of customer service are highly commendable.