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Railroaders' Nostalgia > Tales from the Towers No. 2


Date: 09/06/22 10:44
Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: Seventyfive

Way back in 1976 on the B&OCT I was working the relief job at 16th Street Bridge in Chicago. The tower also handled
the St. Charles Air Line bridge.  Upon arrival one day for 2nd trick, I met a new employee who was to be posting with
me that day.  I don't recall his name so I'll just call him Walt.  We had an old Lazy Boy recliner type of chair in the tower.
Walt was sitting in it when I arrived and never got out of it once for the entire eight-hour shift.  Not to learn anything about
the tower, the interlocker, or the bridges.  Silence the entire shift.  I thought it was strange, but nothing I could do about it.

I never saw Walt again at 16th Street.  But a few weeks later, as I was listening in on the dispatchers' line, I heard Walt
OS a train by Harvey Tower.  Moving a train on the Chicago Heights Sub. through Harvey required throwing only two
levers, one for traffic and one for the signal.  Couldn't be easier.  The CT dispatcher working that day was a marginal, at
best, extra board DS who had some illusions that he was a rules examiner or personnel manager and acted accordingly.
However, when Walt OS'd the train, said DS fawned all over him.  "Great job, Walt !  Thanks alot, Walt !  Nice working with you,
Walt !  Great job ! "  And on and on.  My God, it was incredible.

Some days later, I received a call on one of my rest days, asking if I could come in and work Harvey Tower right away.
No problem.  That was such a good tower to work, I would almost do it for free.  But for time & a half, you bet.  I didn't
ask when I received the call, but presumed whomever was working either got ill on the job or didn't show up.
Upon arrival at Harvey Tower I learned that Walt began the shift, but soon thereafter a mass of State and Harvey Police
surrounded the tower and took Walt into custody.  It turned out that he was wanted for bank robbery.  Then I recalled
how he had been laying low at 16th Street weeks earlier.  Wow, a bank robber in the tower.  I never heard any more 
about him.  He seemed like a nice guy, just very quiet and the info about the robbery was almost hard to believe.

I hope to have another Tale from the Towers next month.  There a plenty.  It's just a matter of what I can print.



Date: 09/06/22 13:18
Re: Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: norm1153

Wow!   Great story.



Date: 09/06/22 16:34
Re: Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: symph1

Seventyfive Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I hope to have another Tale from the Towers next
> month.  There a plenty.  It's just a matter of
> what I can print.

I think the ones you can't print are the ones we really want to read.  :-)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/06/22 16:35 by symph1.



Date: 09/06/22 19:50
Re: Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: CCDeWeese

Based on time, I doubt there is anything you cannot print.
 



Date: 09/06/22 20:46
Re: Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: TAW

CCDeWeese Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Based on time, I doubt there is anything you
> cannot print.
>

Yup. I finally posted my stolen locomotive trape/video after I was sure that everybody had retired. Some of the stuff from the 90s forward is still a problem though.

TAW



Date: 09/07/22 08:31
Re: Tales from the Towers No. 2
Author: santafe199

What a story! And totally believable. In my 32 years I met all kinds of characters. Some of whom (insert chuckle) I can actually talk about on this forum…

Posted from iPhone



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