Welp today would have been Fred’s 92nd birthday and I managed to grab this print of his.
Although undated it represents SP 4449 before restoring to make The American Freedom Train and then the Daylight thereafter.
Dad lived a few houses off the SP Peninsula line where 4449 and friends used to run by all day, shaking the house like a Three Stooges movie. He credited his interest in trains to this Amazon proximity to these giant, fire breathing beasts.
That was when San Mateo Drive was dirt … he told me about the sight of the elephant towing the steam calliope north up the slight hill with the man playing the circus “oomph path path oompah” music frantically, much to his amusement as a little boy.
That makes sense to me, the train connection…. Also the imagination of those traveling passengers and the places that he could only dream about.
Later in life we visited all 50 states, most several times, large part of Canada and Mexico too… all the while photographing the trains you see here.
Happy Birthday Dad, you would have been humbled by the appreciation shown by followers here.
But dude I wish you had marked the date and location on all these…
I’m visiting the desert this week and it’s 102f in the shade.
I’m reminded of the days of summer travels with Dad and Mom and occasionally Brother Fred across California and Nevada and Utah.
The hot super dry air kicks my ass more now than then; I’m spoilt by ocean side living these last few seasons.
Yet the familiar sage, sand a Roadrunner that has been around the back yard throughout the day make me think of the long days on Hwy 50 “chasing” trains .
The road would humm under the G78-15 tires and the brick like aerodynamic shape of Harvey ( the truck ) made a jet like background noise.
There was usually a scanner blasting through an 8ohm dynamic single speaker facing the transmission hump and a Ford Factory speaker facing the windshield, searching for an AM signal that would drift in and out.
This image is from later years I suspect but it’s nostalgic as it is going to get on an iPhone.