Two men killed in Washington train derailment remembered as passionate railroad advocates

Two men who died when a train derailed over Interstate 5 south of Tacoma are being remembered as passionate passenger...

Posted: Dec 20, 2017 5:55 PM
Updated: Dec 20, 2017 5:55 PM

Two men who died when a train derailed over Interstate 5 south of Tacoma are being remembered as passionate passenger railroad advocates.

The Rail Passengers Association reported Tuesday that Jim Hamre and Zack Willhoite, both members of the association, were among the three people killed in Monday morning's derailment in DuPont.

"Both men were devoted to their family and friends, as well as passionate advocates for passenger railroad and advancing the advocacy work of RPA. While we wait on the National Transportation Safety Board's investigation into the cause of the accident, the entire Rail Passengers Association membership and staff will mourn their loss. Our deepest sympathies go out to each of their families," according to a statement from the association.

Jim Mathews, Rail Passengers Association president, said Hamre is one of the most respected railroad advocates in the country.

FOX 12 spoke with a friend of Hamre's and fellow train enthusiast, Dennis Lytton, who spoke highly of him.

"A lot of the things that you see for trains now, you know, in Sound Transit up in Seattle and the TriMet Light Rail, and of course, Cascade Amtrak services, a lot of that is there because of Jim's advocacy," said Lytton. "That's his legacy and it's sad that he died doing what he loved."

Willhoite had worked at Pierce Transit since 2008. Both men were on the board of All Aboard Washington.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the derailment of Amtrak Cascades Train 501, which was heading from Seattle to Portland.

Gov. Jay Inslee said Tuesday that the NTSB is "well on their way" in the investigation.

"Our hearts are with all of the families," he said of the victims. "We have confidence that we will get to the bottom of what caused this horrific tragedy."

More than 70 people were taken to the hospital, at least 10 with serious injuries. Five vehicles and two semis on southbound I-5 were hit by the derailed train.

Southbound I-5 was expected to be closed in the area until at least Wednesday morning and possibly for several days.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 147582

Reported Deaths: 3937
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion24410780
Lake12911350
St. Joseph8651154
Elkhart8281130
Allen7756221
Hamilton5872113
Vanderburgh547750
Tippecanoe346414
Monroe316238
Hendricks3116130
Johnson2947127
Porter288948
Clark280857
Delaware277174
Vigo245534
Madison224587
Cass220120
LaPorte208853
Warrick185362
Floyd170865
Kosciusko169221
Howard155366
Bartholomew137557
Dubois133423
Marshall129826
Henry120728
Boone117748
Grant116839
Wayne114923
Hancock112844
Noble110033
Jackson106412
Morgan90840
Dearborn89528
Daviess82732
Gibson8229
Clinton80116
Shelby76929
Lawrence76732
LaGrange76114
Harrison72924
Putnam69415
Knox68610
DeKalb67411
Posey6695
Steuben5798
Miami5655
Montgomery55722
Fayette55615
White55615
Jasper5264
Greene50537
Scott50313
Decatur49339
Adams4555
Clay4266
Whitley4246
Ripley4138
Sullivan40612
Wells4045
Orange38124
Starke3787
Wabash3769
Spencer3656
Huntington3645
Franklin35925
Jennings35813
Washington3452
Randolph3318
Jefferson3275
Fulton3232
Pike31512
Carroll30513
Perry28214
Jay2756
Fountain2733
Tipton26123
Parke2152
Newton20511
Vermillion2031
Owen1991
Rush1984
Martin1930
Blackford1843
Crawford1401
Pulaski1401
Brown1283
Ohio1167
Benton1060
Union1010
Switzerland840
Warren721
Unassigned0233

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 181787

Reported Deaths: 5067
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin30590635
Cuyahoga19212671
Hamilton15890338
Montgomery9883184
Lucas8058370
Butler7856122
Summit6406260
Warren393360
Stark3605178
Mahoning3567283
Marion332149
Pickaway294646
Delaware275927
Lorain262389
Fairfield254156
Licking241065
Wood240181
Clark231654
Clermont225936
Trumbull2174134
Greene210840
Columbiana207887
Allen195873
Miami191056
Lake184757
Medina175542
Portage153067
Mercer143327
Ross130533
Wayne125968
Richland125724
Tuscarawas117822
Athens11452
Erie111453
Darke108850
Madison101314
Hancock97520
Auglaize92716
Lawrence88524
Putnam86127
Shelby85014
Geauga81950
Muskingum8174
Scioto7709
Belmont76827
Union7203
Ashtabula71348
Huron6909
Sandusky69022
Seneca57614
Preble57417
Ottawa55930
Holmes53710
Fulton4726
Henry44217
Jefferson4384
Defiance43713
Clinton42013
Jackson4197
Fayette4188
Crawford4088
Logan3923
Champaign3783
Highland3714
Ashland3705
Brown3583
Knox35215
Perry35011
Washington32423
Morrow3222
Williams3124
Hardin30913
Coshocton28612
Pike2780
Wyandot27813
Gallia27413
Guernsey2688
Van Wert2153
Meigs20512
Adams1936
Hocking1899
Carroll1887
Paulding1791
Monroe14118
Noble1120
Vinton853
Harrison763
Morgan690
Unassigned00
Fort Wayne
Overcast
48° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 46°
Angola
Overcast
45° wxIcon
Hi: 45° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 41°
Huntington
Overcast
46° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 39°
Feels Like: 46°
Decatur
Overcast
46° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 44°
Van Wert
Overcast
46° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 40°
Feels Like: 44°
Cloudy Tuesday
WFFT Radar
WFFT Temperatures
WFFT National

Community Events