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Philly NRHS - Railfan Pictures of the Week


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The Philadelphia Chapter of the

National Railway Historical Society

Established in 1936


Railfan Pictures of the Week - 11/07/2010

Amtrak Northeast Corridor Frankford Jct Philadelphia PA November 7 2010

A friend of mine passed away last week. I had known Domenic Maio for over twenty years. We worked together in the old Lee Tire building in Conshohocken, and found we shared a love of trains (and our Phillies, Eagles and Flyers, among other things). The windows of our office looked out on passenger trains that ran on SEPTA's Norristown Line on one side of the Schuylkill River and freight trains on Conrail's Harrisburg Line on the other. It was like our own 1:1 scale model railroad, we even had our little Conrail switcher that came to work the plant across the street every couple of days. There were rails in Dom's life at home well. He lived on Torresdale Avenue in Philadelphia about a block south of the Route 56 trolley loop, back when they still ran the PCC's there, and I remember him waving from his front step as we passed by on a Farewell to the 56 railfan trip. He was also minutes from his favorite train watching spot, Holmesburg Junction on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor. He loved trains so much he would occasionally take the train to work, which for most people would be an inconvenience, considering it required him to go into town on the R7 Trenton train from Tacony to connect to the R6 Norristown train that would drop him off at Spring Mill, a stone's throw from the office. That's an hour and a half trip that takes 35 minutes to drive, believe me, you gotta love the train to do that. He was also a fan of Lionel trains, and had the required 4x8 layout in his house to play with whenever the real thing was not available.

After eight years I got another job, this time closer to his beloved NEC, and we kept in touch. His office moved to Norristown overlooking the transportation center, and I was on the other end of the Morrisville Line, so when CSX started running the Q190/Q191 trains, we kept each other updated on what was coming and going. A few years ago he retired and defected to New Jersey (that is what us Philly boys say about people when they move to the other side of the Delaware River, well at least one of the nicer things we say about "those" people). We would talk from time to time, usually about him taking his grandson out to see the NJT trains that rolled by not far from his house, that is if he was not riding them. He especially appreciated it when the casinos, famous for taking his money, gave something back when they started up the ACES trains from New York City to Atlantic City; it brought something new to the rails near him.

We railfans take a lot of pictures of the trains, but without friends to share them with, it would all be a waste of time. Dom was a friend of mine and I felt privileged to share them with him. In a way, Dom was a friend of yours too, because one of the reasons I started these RPOTW pages so many years ago was that it made it easier for Dom to see what I saw, and as a bonus, you got to see it too. So today when I happened to be out at the Amtrak/SEPTA disaster drill and saw the ACES train with the Boardwalk Empire cars pass by, I took it as a sign and zipped down I-95 to Frankford Junction to catch it heading to Jersey.

This page is dedicated to you, Dom.

ACES train 7181 with NJT 4405 and 4801 with Boardwalk Empire cars

All pictures November 7 2010 Copyright © 2010 John P. Almeida

Photographs for personal use only. All rights reserved by original owner of image. Reproduction or redistribution in any form without express written permission is prohibited.

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Last Updated November 7, 2010

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