Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Righteous young lady!

Northern Pacific 3617, Yakima Washington, July 21, 1967. So I am in my final year in the Air Force, stationed at Hamilton AFB. I became smitten by a righteous young lady, and we consummated our nuptials in the Base Chapel. Ever notice how churches on military bases are “chapels,” not churches?

Be that as it may, we charted out a West Coast honeymoon to see several National Parks, beginning with Mt. Shasta. By and by we ended up in Yakima, on our way to Mt. Rainier National Park.

No sooner had we checked into our motel than I heard the unmistakable sound of heavy horsepower near by. Flipping open the bathroom window, low and behold the mainline of the Northern Pacific!

This lash up was pulling on a westbound freighter and was creeping along meeting an eastbound train. These units were fresh off the assembly line at La Grange, so much so I swear I could smell the
DuPont Imron!

I didn’t stick around to watch the meet complete; remember, I am on my honeymoon, and there is a righteous young lady back in the motel room who does not want to be upstaged by a diesel locomotive!

Railroad Stuff: Northern Pacific 3617, built by General Motors as SD45, 3,600 horsepower, 1967, serial number 33038. Became
Burlington Northern 6417 in 1970, retired in 1987 and scrapped by Pielet Brothers.

Photograph of her sister, BN 6416, nee Northern Pacific 3616, in the so-called
“Cascade Green” scheme.

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