Former cop attacked on SkyTrain

By Gail Johnson

In the most recent issue of Mind Body Soul, I interviewed a woman named Tricia Dong, a local personal trainer who also teaches kettlebell training. (See the story, called Kettlebell Conditioning.)

She’s also a former police officer, and she was recently physically attacked on the SkyTrain. With her permission, I’m copying below an article she wrote in one of her newsletters for her company, Code 5 Fitness.

A Lesson in Gratitude

By Tricia Dong

I contemplated not sharing this with you, but the message is too important. This month’s newsletter is longer than usual, and for that I apologize, but I hope that if it helps one person, then my experience will have been worth it.

The importance of maintaining one’s training and making fitness a priority, regardless of your occupation.

Last week Tuesday, as I was going to my hula class, I got jumped on Skytrain by two people. A guy and a girl, looking to fight and beat someone up – in broad daylight, IN the car, during rush hour! I only remember flashes of the incident, I asked a lady what happened and she filled in the blanks. Physically, I’m ok, I sustained a fractured foot, some bumps and bruises and a scratched and bloody ear, but I didn’t lose and I wasn’t more seriously injured.

I guess it all started when they perceived an invasion into their personal space (crowded public transit at rush hour, people jammed together, and the two thugs were seated!) They started trash talking to me, I tossed back a few, but then turned away to ignore them – escalating the situation was not worth it. When they got up to leave a few stops later (Broadway Station), that’s when it happened. I know the guy came right up close to me and stepped on me really hard (fracturing my foot), I tried to kick him away, and I think she jumped me from behind and punched me in the head. From there I went into defensive mode against multiple attackers, just trying to keep them out of my space as we were in very close quarters with many people around. Apparently at some point I was pushed and hit my head on a pole; I must have fallen down, I do remember being on my back, and all of my judo training kicking in. So they tried to kick and stomp me but couldn’t get close enough, and then some bystanders pulled the guy away (I don’t know what happened to the girl), then they just took off. I did report it to the authorities and again, I’m NOT seriously injured, so to try to turn it into a lesson, here is what I am thankful for:

That I am healthy, and have made fitness a priority in life

That I didn’t get hurt worse; I could have been killed if they landed the right hit

That they didn’t have any weapons

That it was in the daylight, with many bystanders to intervene and call for help

That I was able to defend myself – had it been anyone else they may not have walked away

That I am trained in judo and will continue with Brazilian Ju-Jitsu as well

That I am blessed with friends and family that care about me

At first, I was embarrassed that something like that happened to ME, one never thinks it will happen to them, but everybody I’ve discussed this with has said those types of thugs are trouble makers looking for a fight, regardless of who the victim is. I realized that if they had the guts to do that in the middle of rush hour, to a small Asian female (not knowing my training background), imagine how a “regular” person would have been victimized, or what would have happened if it had been late at night. I’m guessing the victim would have serious injuries, be hospitalized, or worse. I initially didn’t want to tell anybody, but I know I didn’t provoke it, and reacted in the appropriate manner. I do hope sharing my experience has helped you in some way, as it has for me in the form of helping heal my anger, outrage, and feelings of victimization.

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