Police say mom pulled son into path of train

Authorities say a woman and boy whose bodies were found at a railroad crossing in eastern Iowa died in a murder-suici...

Posted: May 23, 2018 4:19 PM
Updated: May 23, 2018 4:19 PM

Authorities say a woman and boy whose bodies were found at a railroad crossing in eastern Iowa died in a murder-suicide.

The incident happened May 4. Teresa Gerleman, 35, and her 8-year-old son, Henry Fields were found by police sent to a Belle Plaine crossing around 5 a.m. Friday.

The Iowa Public Safety Department said after interviews of Union Pacific Railroad employees, video footage from the Union Pacific engine and a multitude of a sundry interviews, the conclusion is Gerleman committed suicide and pulled her son into the path of the train, thus killing him as well.

"Evidence at the impact site indicates Gerleman waited near the railroad tracks for the Union Pacific train to approach. Gerleman and her son Henry can be seen on video crossing the tracks and as the train draws near, Gerleman returns to the center of the tracks and at the last moment pulls Henry into the path of the train."

Union Pacific Railroad employees cooperated with the investigation.

Ruth Ann Stratto, who lived across the street from Gerleman, said she still gets choked up thinking of the 35-year-old and her 8-year-old.

Stratto said she lived across the street from Gerleman and that she and her son died a few blocks north of their neighborhood.

"I heard the train just squeal their brakes," Stratto said.

Friends of Gerleman created a Facebook page entitled, "In Loving Memory Of Teresa Gerleman & Henry Fields" as a tribute.

According to the Facebook page, Gerleman was dealing with family issues and had just recently moved to Belle Plaine.

"I think it's very tragic," Stratto said. "I've got grandchildren (and) great grandchildren. My heart goes out to that little boy."

Just a week before Gerleman and her son died another man threw himself in front of a train on the same crossing.

Friends told KCCI that Gerleman and the man were connected, but authorities could not confirm the claim.

Family members told KCCI that there will be no funeral for Gerleman.

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: 45°
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