Yesterday, he caused nearly twenty-five minutes of travel chaos to rush-hour passengers travelling from Manchester Oxford Road station. Today, ex-psychiatric patient John Morton, 45, offered an unreserved apology to commuters for the inconvenience he caused them as a result of his thoughtless botched attempt to take his own life by throwing himself under the 17.18 Blackpool North train.
One of the affected passengers, 32 year-old Ian Stemp, a credit controller from Bolton, said of the apology: “Of course, I’m glad he’s said he’s sorry, but that won’t give me the first ten minutes of ‘Egg Heads’ back will it?”
Mr Stemp, who had to wait on a stationary train for seventeen minutes with nothing to do but look at his watch and sigh, added: “I mean, it’ll probably be repeated at some point, but BB2 don’t do a plus one option, so I missed Kevin and CJ’s bits.
“It wasn’t as bad for some people, they had books and their phones with them; my i-Phone and my James Patterson novel were in my rucksack, but I’d left it in work. Luckily the girl sitting opposite was quite fit, or I don’t know how I would have coped.”
Mr Morton, who has suffered clinical depression since 2005 after he lost his wife and daughter to a road traffic accident, gave this statement earlier from his bed in the Manchester Royal Infirmary:
“I sincerely apologise for any disruption caused to passengers travelling on Northern Rail services yesterday. I tend to drink more around the anniversary of wife and daughter Gail and Leah’s deaths, and , unfortunately, I had also not been taking my medication lately. But obviously, that’s no excuse.
“Thankfully, I glanced off the front of the train and was thrown into undergrowth. Apparently, If I’d actually gone on the tracks it would have been much worse. The hold-ups could have been well over an hour.
“I can only heed the advice shouted at me by one of the passengers while I was being lifted into the ambulance, and make sure I have some pills in the house next time.”