"Takin' Twenty" with the Virginian Brethren by Skip Salmon

NW Mailing List nw-mailing-list at nwhs.org
Thu Jul 23 09:45:21 EDT 2015

Last night I had the pleasure of "Takin' Twenty" with seven of the Brethren
and Friends of the Virginian Railway.  Somehow a lot of the early time was
spent telling blond jokes.....more to come in future reports because I
write these down.....

 I quizzed all about their knowledge or lack of it about the recent Norfolk
Southern mishap at Dublin, VA when a empty rack train ran into the back of
another loaded one.  Amazingly no one has any concrete information. Someone
is doing a good job keeping mum about this one.

 The Jewel from the Past, like those in a Hamilton 23 jewel 950B Railway
Special with box car numbers is from September 18, 2008:  " Bob Rowland
told a story about another listed Engineer Thomas L. Gallion.  During a
practice baseball game of the VGN and N&W workers, Bob was playing third
base and Gallion hit a triple. When he slid into third under the throw, Bob
said 'he flattened me like a yoyo.'"

 I showed the Brethren an email I get last week from our good friend
Abraham Burnett about the big wreck of May 7, 1966 three miles west of
Kumis, near V264 where 41 cars were derailed on hot shot N&W train 84. Abe
was on the head end when the train went into Emergency at about 40MPH.  "I
went back and found 'a big yellow refrigerator car sitting perfectly
crosswise on the track'.".  This happened real close to what is now the
Bradshaw Spur where every day the Trash Train from Roanoke leaves the old
VGN main line for the land fill near Bradshaw.  This is the wreck where the
farmer got a new bridge across the North Fork of the Roanoke River for his
cattle to cross.  Several of the Brethren recalled that the farmer refused
N&W to come on his property until they agreed to leave the "bridge". This
bridge is a long TTX flat car that can be  seen today if the take the
Ironto Exit of I-81 and follow the tracks south (actually west).  Landon
Gregory was working dispatch at Crewe when this happened and remembered the
wreck and bridge.

 I got a request from Steve Summers for the Brethren to answer three
questions about the VGN EL-3As.  I asked the Brethren including VGN
Electric Guru Greely Wyatt with the following answers:  Did  the EL-3A's
middle units have head lights?  Answer "we don't think so".  When did the
class lamps move from the brackets on the front by the windows to the
roofs?  Answer:  "Don’t know".  And What did the original whistle/horns
look like and were  they mounted?"  Answer:  "They were small whistles and
were mounted on the roof on the engineers side".  Steve, hope this helps.
Anyone out there have any more information for Steve about these three

 Then there's this for Frank B.:  As a judge, I was sentencing criminal
defendants when I saw a vaguely familiar face.  I reviewed his record and
found the man was a career criminal, except for a five-year period in which
there were no convictions.  "Milton," I asked, puzzled, "how is it you were
able to stay out of trouble for those five years?"  "I was in prison," he
answered.  "You should know that -you were the one who sent me there."
"That's not possible," I said.  "I wasn't even a judge then."  "No, you
weren't the judge," the defendant countered, smiling mischievously.  "You
were my lawyer."

 Time to pull the pin on this one.

 Departing Now from V248,

 Skip Salmon


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