Subway survivor gets special invitation from viewer

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NORTHPORT, Long Island (PIX11) – The last time 27-year-old Yasmin Rahman was on a boat, she was 9 years old, and her most vivid memory was her uncle trying to navigate the vessel out of a storm.

The storm could have been a metaphor for what Rahman was enduring in her Queens household, the youngest of three daughters being raised by a mentally troubled, single mom.

Rahman survived a desperate bid to end her life, when she was just 14, and on Tuesday, the waters were calm, during her boat ride on Northport Harbor.

“It’s peaceful,” Rahman told PIX 11, as the breeze blew through her hair, “It makes me feel happy…serene with life.”

Rahman, who lives in Queens, was invited to Northport by a PIX 11 viewer, Ellen Benjoya Skotheim,  who was moved by the young woman’s efforts to find a job, even though background checks by employers keep bringing up the traumatic incident when Rahman was 14.  On June 1, 2001, Rahman survived a jump in front of an “R” train, at 59th Street and Lexington Avenue.

“I gave up that anything would ever change,” Rahman recalled of her fragile state at that time–and abusive home life.

Rahman recovered from head injuries and broken bones to earn a psychology degree from Pace University–and she dreams of being a counselor. But because her juvenile health and police records haven’t been sealed, the past keeps coming back to haunt her.

The viewer, Ellen Benjoya Skotheim,

invited Rahman to her sailboat in Northport and talked to her about an environmental non-profit she runs.

Rahman was grateful to have someone reach out to her–and hopes she will eventually get a position that’s a good fit with the psychology training she has.

“There are people who DO understand,” Rahman said, smiling as the sea breeze blew in her hair yet again.