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Funeral Trains, Past and Present

Train Tuesdays

The Washington Post has a long article along with photos and video to mark the 45th anniversary of Robert F. Kennedy’s funeral train:

The Penn Central train carrying Kennedy’s body would cut a swath through a small-town and largely rural America populated by people he had spoken passionately to, and about, during his 82-day campaign. Up to 2 million people lined the tracks to bear witness.

Another famous funeral train trip will recreated for the 150th Anniversary of Lincoln’s Funeral Train in 2015:

David H. Kloke, master mechanic, is the owner of Kloke Construction and Kloke Locomotive Works, LLC, and has been in the construction business for 40 years. His passion to build the Leviathan locomotive came from watching a documentary about Abraham Lincoln. Now, building a replica of the Lincoln Funeral car, Dave’s goal is to present an accurate, operating 19th-century steam locomotive and train to re-create Lincoln’s journey into history.

Funeral trains are more than history, as they are still used on occasion in modern times.    Just last week, an Amtrak special transported Senator Frank Lautenberg’s body back to Washington after the funeral.  Subwaynut.com describes the scene in the article
Senator Frank R. Lautenberg’s Funeral Train At His Station:

I think the title tells all about my adventure today to stop at the Frank R. Lautenberg Secaucus Junction Station to pay my respects to a great public transportation leader as he was transferred from motorcade to train at his namesake station for a very short ceremony with the New Jersey Transit Police Honor Guard, and only his Rabbi speaking in a brief ceremony in the rotunda. From there he was put aboard a baggage car to Washington aboard a special Amtrak Train of 4 cars…

 

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