Erwin Tumiri recovers, in a clinic in Cochabamba, from the blows he suffered in a road accident.Jorge Abrego / EFE
“I don't feel immortal.
I'm scared by everything that happened, ”says Erwin Tumiri.
This young Bolivian is a survivor.
On November 28, 2016, I was traveling as a crew technician on the LaMia company flight that crashed out of fuel near the airport in Medellín, Colombia, with the Brazilian soccer team Chapecoense on board.
71 people died and Tumiri was among the six who were saved.
On Tuesday, a bus crashed at dawn on the highway that connects the city of Cochabamba with Chimoré.
21 people died in the accident.
Erwin Tumiri was in the passage and, once again, had only a few scratches.
"The bus was speeding, so I sensed that something was going to happen," he says.
When the vehicle went off the road and began to fall and hit the mountain, he knew he had to hold on as hard as he could.
Tumiri didn't think about his previous accident, he didn't have time for that.
"I just held onto the seats hard," he says.
When the bus stopped circling, he managed to get out in some way that he doesn't remember well.
“Other people didn't get out;
I do, ”he explains as if to apologize.
Four years ago, he also walked out of the crashed plane in Colombia.
He even helped a flight attendant.
Both were the only two living crew members.
His story in the LaMia accident has been covered so many times by the media that Tumiri, after a few months after it happened, refused to grant further interviews.
His mother chased away any journalist who wanted to interview him.
Today Erwin is back in the headlines.
Did the two accidents resemble each other at all?
Tumiri does not hesitate: "No, they were not alike," he says.
Tumiri, employed today as a Bolivian government official, says that God has saved him.
After LaMia's accident, she gave her testimony in many churches.
“Daddy God exists, he is there.
I ask why, Lord, did you bless me, if I am lazy to read even literature and all that.
Sometimes when I'm at home I start to think and question things.
That moment is not easy to carry.
But, thanks to the many friends I have had and those who were with me at the time, I was able.
For me it was a great blessing, "he told his co-religionists in one of these" revivals, "according to the account of the journalist Sergio de la Zerda in
"My mother was devastated [in the first accident], now she is calmer," he says relieved.
He recovers in Cochabamba surrounded by his sisters and nieces, who are the ones who establish the links with the journalists who call from various parts of the world.
Soon he will return to his job in the Civil Aeronautics Directorate and, like the other officials, will have to travel again by air and by land.
Tumiri still loves to fly.
Had he been born into a wealthy family, he would undoubtedly be a pilot.
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