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Railroaders' Nostalgia > George R Fetty, SP - Obit


Date: 03/03/21 20:12
George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: Westbound

Learned that George R Fetty, long-time SP Superintendent of the Los Angeles Division, died yesterday, March 2.  He was 79 years old.  I knew him back in the 1980s when he was Asst. Supt. at Oakland and found him always a pleasant guy.



Date: 03/03/21 20:56
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: mdo

RIP  GRF

George Fetty and I are alumni of the 1968 Southern Pacific management training class

We also are members of The inauspicious group of former SP Division Superintendents

and  he worked with me when I was Vice President of Strategic Development.

Still later we worked together on several railroad industry consulting projects.

we also were the same age, 79.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/21 11:21 by mdo.



Date: 03/04/21 10:38
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: Zephyr

Rest in Peace George!

I took over for George as Assistant to the Superintendent LA Division, which was the PACE job (Paper and Carbon Everywhere) formally known as Projection and Control of Expenditures or budget officer.  George went on to higher management jobs on the LA Division, returning as Superintendent in early 1985 when Mike Burke left for APL.  I worked for George as Asst. Superintendent for a few months until I left for APL.  I kept in touch with George for many years after leaving SPRR.  He had one of the greatest sarcastic sense of humors I've ever experienced and was always good for a laugh or light hearted story no matter how bad it was around us.  Too young to be leaving us...

Pete
Clio, California



Date: 03/04/21 11:43
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: tehachcond

   I was a UTU Local Chairman representing the SP LA-Bakersfield territory at the time of the UP buyout of the SP.  I participated in the Los Angeles Hub negotiations.  George was there as kind of an "expert witness," because no one was better versed in LA Basin operations.
   The sad part about this was that every time he tried to contribute something based on his knowledge and experience, you could just sense from the body language of the UP people in the room that they were thinking, "Shut up! You are SP and can't possibly know anything!  We are UP! We have it all figured out!"
   Well, we know how that worked out, don't we?
   RIP George!

Brian Black
Castle Rock, CO



Date: 03/04/21 14:40
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: PHall

tehachcond Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>    I was a UTU Local Chairman representing the
> SP LA-Bakersfield territory at the time of the UP
> buyout of the SP.  I participated in the Los
> Angeles Hub negotiations.  George was there as
> kind of an "expert witness," because no one was
> better versed in LA Basin operations.
>    The sad part about this was that every time
> he tried to contribute something based on his
> knowledge and experience, you could just sense
> from the body language of the UP people in the
> room that they were thinking, "Shut up! You are SP
> and can't possibly know anything!  We are UP! We
> have it all figured out!"
>    Well, we know how that worked out, don't we?
>    RIP George!
>
> Brian Black
> Castle Rock, CO

Were they really UP people or former MP people who took over at UP?
Because there seemed to be a major shift in attitude when the "folks from Little Rock" arrived.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 03/04/21 14:42 by PHall.



Date: 03/04/21 15:41
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: WAF

Definately this sounds like MOP attitude



Date: 03/04/21 16:20
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: HardYellow

I was told by many old UP guys that things were just fine until the MoPac took over.



Date: 03/04/21 16:40
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: WAF

HardYellow Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I was told by many old UP guys that things were
> just fine until the MoPac took over.

Very true. UP was a great company until 1982



Date: 03/05/21 01:10
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: trainjunkie

WAF Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Very true. UP was a great company until 1982

We felt it in the 80s even in our little UP outpost in Los Angeles. Mopac executives ruined the culture and morale at UP.



Date: 03/05/21 05:31
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: jmhemmer

I just want to note for posterity that--from my perspective anyway--there was a window of time at UP when the culture shifted strongly in a positive direction.  When Jim Young--a UP guy from the start--took over as CEO in 2005 until his untimely cancer diagnosis and death, Jim delivered a consistent message to management of customer service, safety, respect for employees, and integrity.  It showed up in many ways.  By about 2008, UP was repeatedly named one of best places to work in America, even beating Southwest Airlines once.  It showed up in much improved safety results, much better operating metrics, and much better customer service.  Empoyee satisfaction numbers reached record levels, partly because Jim would show up to meet a track gang and swat flies with them on a hot day in southwest Wyoming, and visited all over the system.  His approach at every employee gathering was, "Ask me your toughest questions, and I will stay until you run out of them."  

I enjoyed George immensely, working on an Alameda Corridor flap.  RIP, Geroge.  

There were other good ones, even on UP.  RIP.



Date: 03/05/21 12:27
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: tehachcond

PHall Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> tehachcond Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> >    I was a UTU Local Chairman representing
> the
> > SP LA-Bakersfield territory at the time of the
> UP
> > buyout of the SP.  I participated in the Los
> > Angeles Hub negotiations.  George was there as
> > kind of an "expert witness," because no one was
> > better versed in LA Basin operations.
> >    The sad part about this was that every
> time
> > he tried to contribute something based on his
> > knowledge and experience, you could just sense
> > from the body language of the UP people in the
> > room that they were thinking, "Shut up! You are
> SP
> > and can't possibly know anything!  We are UP!
> We
> > have it all figured out!"
> >    Well, we know how that worked out, don't
> we?
> >    RIP George!
> >
> > Brian Black
> > Castle Rock, CO
>
> Were they really UP people or former MP people who
> took over at UP?
> Because there seemed to be a major shift in
> attitude when the "folks from Little Rock"
> arrived.

   I'm not really sure, but I think you may be right.  These were mostly Labor Relations people we were dealing with at the time.  No idea what their background was, but their attitude was definitely MOP, or the "Missouri Mules," as some called them. Art Shoener was the VP-Operations at the time, and what a piece of work he was!

Brian Black
Castle Rock, CO



Date: 03/06/21 08:11
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: Drknow

I’m afraid TE&Y on UP never got to experience the said “love fest” that went on during the Jim Young regime.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 03/08/21 12:51
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: cctgm

I never met George but he sounds like he was a great manager and yes Jim Young made the UP a much better place, 



Date: 03/08/21 18:01
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: SanJoaquinEngr

I remember George he was a pretty good guy. When he was train master at Dolores he could always be found at the Winchester Gun Club having lunch. One year at Dolores a new Superintendent came to town and told his junior officers to cut the overtime on all locals. The crews revolted and none of the cars were spotted to the local industries. There was a back log of 350 cars. On the third day George called each job on the radio and said the war is over ! Within two days all cars were spotted and the crews were happy.

Posted from Android



Date: 03/10/21 21:48
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: Drknow

cctgm Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I never met George but he sounds like he was a
> great manager and yes Jim Young made the UP a much
> better place, 


I’m sorry but I have to disagree about Jim Young.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 03/16/21 11:39
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: switchlamp

Sorry but I never felt any love from UP. They must have kept that in Omaha.

Posted from Android



Date: 03/17/21 19:54
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: Drknow

switchlamp Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Sorry but I never felt any love from UP. They must
> have kept that in Omaha.
>
> Posted from Android
Yeah.....

Posted from iPhone



Date: 03/30/21 07:04
Re: George R Fetty, SP - Obit
Author: railstiesballast

I knew George and worked with him at some points on the SP.. I'm sorry to hear of his passing, RIP.
After I left SP we crossed paths when we both worked on planning and design for the Alameda Corridor and then Metrolink.
He even invited me to a couple of rounds at the Virginia Club golf) in Long Beach, usually with John Kerins, another ex SP operating guy.
One thing George learned to perfection from Bill Lacy was the 20-part question.
He would occasinally call to try and find out something about Metrolink engineering and operations.  He would start with one question, then before any answer could be started, 19 more questions, many of them "leading" in the direction he wanted the first one to be answered.  It was more of a debate/sounding board for him, but always fun.



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