I'm sorry I haven't kept up on this. Over the holiday weekend, BNSF finally released the name of the last victim. Conductor Lara Gayle Taylor, 45, was a single mother, survived by her only son, Jacob Taylor of Colorado Springs, CO. A memorial service was held for her today in Kansas City, MO.
The cleanup has just about finished, the only remains are the two lead engines of one train and the lead engine of the other. They're so fused together, NTSB wants them intact to study, so they'll remain here in town for the time being. The massive number of people has dwindled to a handful of BNSF and NTSB investigators. The last 4 blocks of our road remain blockaded as they finish hauling off the remaining trailers by tractor rigs. Which is kind of interesting since there isn't a load rated road out of that area and a truck hauling a maintainer already caved in a sewer main two blocks away. The asphalt is rutted and crumbling, and the residents have to dodge large trucks and heavy equipment just getting in and out. I don't want to be ghoulish, but BNSF really needs to fix our little road when they're done. Sorry, that was ghoulish, wasn't it?
Sonic and Dairy Queen are trying to out-nice each other with cold treats for the workers. Considering our high hit 106 today, I'm wondering if some of those cones are going down shirts and pants. Things are slowly getting back to normal. Prayers are still with the three souls lost.
As the trains approach the site from either direction, you hear the salute. Low, toot-toot, toot-toot, toot-toot; then the loud approach whistle of the crossing. The low toots are one of the saddest sounds I've ever heard.