Sunset For John

ScreenHunter_3090 Sep. 16 09.01

Students mourn Md. teen killed by Amtrak train – Story | WTTG

We had an incredible sunset in Boyds, MD last night. Boyds is a very small town, which suffered a tragic loss on Monday afternoon. John Martin DeReggi Jr. was taking pictures with his girlfriend and her sister when an Amtrak train came around the bend at 75+ MPH and according to the girls, did not blow its horn. John’s girlfriend went one way, and he went the other. He was killed instantly.

John was a track star and one of the most popular kids in the county. Rival schools in Montgomery County wore blue yesterday in his memory. I’m good friends with his grandmother and was talking to her about John the day before the accident. She always described him in the most glowing terms. Like yesterday’s sunset.

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21 Responses to Sunset For John

  1. omanuel says:

    Thanks for sharing these glimpses of John’s short life with us.

  2. Gail Combs says:

    Please forward our condolences and prayers to your friends Tony. It is very hard to loose a child even for those who are not his relatives.

  3. lectrikdog says:

    Condolences to you and John’s family and friends. Life can be unfortunate and full of the unexpected. I can only hope that he is now in a better place. The Sunset is no doubt, an indication of this. R.I.P. John.

  4. emsnews says:

    And this is why one doesn’t play on or hang out on train tracks. Trains can’t stop easily.

    • Michael 2 says:

      Some years ago I obtained my own reminder of railroad safety. On welded rails they can come fast and nearly silent especially on a slight downgrade and there’s no telling which rails they will be using. One of my favorite trainspotting areas is the canyons from Ontario, Oregon up through Baker then down to LaGrande Now With Windmills ™.

  5. Andy DC says:

    I am very sad to hear the news. Sounds like a heck of a kid. My sympathies to the family.

    I have no first hand knowledge of the tragedy, but I agree with emsnews’ comments. Train tracks are no place to play. Also, even if the train “did not blow its horn”, it would seem pretty obvious that a train going “75 mph” (how do we know the speed anyhow) can be heard from a long way away and how long does it take to get off railroad tracks that you have no business being on to begin with? Maybe someone tied him to them, like in the old movies?

    Don’t get me wrong, it was horrible for John, his family and his community. But it sounds like some local attorney is already circling around, ready to exploit the tragedy for his own advantage.

    • lectrikdog says:

      I will bet this happened at a station platform. Those Amtracks move faster than commuter trains, and you don’t really hear them until they are perilously close, especially if rounding a curve. In addition many suburban villages have instituted no horn rules for train traffic. A perniciously dumb idea.

    • Snowleopard says:

      Sorry to hear about your friend’s grandkid.

      When I was a young kid (before girlfriends) I played on the tracks. We liked to ride our bicycles on the rails! We could hear a freight for miles away, and it was slow and only dangerous if you ignored it. Some types of passenger train are very quiet though, especially if the grade is even or downhill and no need for a stop is likely (crossings, stations etc). Our track was double and each track was only used in one direction. Consequently we learned early to always face the oncoming train direction,

      People (no one I knew) did die on those tracks though, mostly at the stations, usually when they walked mindlessly past the rear of a departing train into the path of an oncoming one that was not stopping..

  6. Don says:

    Pray for the trainman/engineer also. This sort of thing is extremely traumatic for a trainman/engineer.

  7. darrylb says:

    Condolences to John from a 46 year track and field Coach.
    Did he take the picture above???

  8. Scarface says:

    Very tragic story. My condolences to his family and friends. May the Good Lord give them strength and comfort.

  9. Obama Seeks Psychological Help with Climate Change

    Obama does need psychological help!

    • omanuel says:

      Climategate emails raised too many questions and official responses contained too few answers. That may be why Professor Judith Curry joined the broad-based Heterodox Academy now forming to try to understand the implications of lock-step, politically-correct, world-wide, Orwellian thought control!

    • Billy Liar says:

      After the psycho’s fail he’ll be turning to special agents to ‘help’ with climate change.

  10. Robertv says:

    On a dry lakebed in Nevada, a group of friends build the first scale model of the solar system with complete planetary orbits: a true illustration of our place in the universe.

  11. Gary Laptosh says:

    What a nice and decent group of intelligent individuals people this site.
    I was on the MARC commuter just behind the Amtrak train involved and got home to WV 3 hours late. But I got home to the rest of my life.
    Yes, we pray and offer condolences to the family and engineer. We also hope that the psychological scars that his girlfriend now carries will be something that she will be able to deal with in the future. From what police investigators have told me, it is a terrible, terrible thing to witness something like this.

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