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Harnessing the "Truly Powerful" – National Accolades for Fort Wayne Idea

Jim Wrinn, editor of TRAINS Magazine with 90,000 subscribers, recently submitted this letter to the City of Fort Wayne. Thanks for the support, Jim.

Sept. 4, 2012

The presence of an operating steam locomotive is a powerful tool. It is a symbol nationwide of the great effort that it took to build America, the labor of a people, and success. Today, it is also an excellent tool with which to bring people together.

Fort Wayne is fortunate to have one of the largest and best operating steam locomotives left in the U.S. today, Nickel Plate Road No. 765. You are also blessed to have good, dedicated, and trustworthy people in the organization that cares for and operates the locomotive. It is a recipe for success.

At TRAINS Magazine, we see many railway preservation projects nationwide, but few with as much potential as the Headwaters Junction proposal that your city is considering.  The potential it has to become a catalyst for tourism, an engine for economic development, and a spark for the overall livability of your city is enormous. I hope you will latch onto this idea and move forward with it!

I recently had the good fortune to be in Harrisburg, Pa., when steam locomotive No. 765 visited. In villages large and small, thousands of people turned out to see this living piece of history come to their communities. Men, women, and children, waved, smiled, and applauded. But the one memory that will stick with me is the man with whom I shared a spot on a bridge. He told me the story of how his father worked briefly for the railroad more than 50 years ago.  As the train passed, he wept tears of joy.

The presence of an operating steam locomotive is truly powerful.

Please let me know if there is anything I can do to support this proposal.


Jim Wrinn