(Trenton, Ohio – February 22, 2012)
A 33-year-old father, pushing his four-year-old son in a stroller, died along with his child as they attempted to cross CSX railroad tracks near, but not at, a crossing in Trenton, OH about 5:10 P.M. Wednesday afternoon as they returned from a fishing trip to the Great Miami River.
Some witnesses said the stroller may have become stuck on the tracks, and Robert Stacey Brown, 33, had picked the stroller and its young occupant up to carry both across the tracks when they were struck by the Cincinnati-bound train consisting of three locomotives and 55 cars, and were flung between 50 and 60 feet, landing beside the railroad tracks.
The father, who had recently been diagnosed with epilepsy and was unable to work, was pronounced dead at the scene, while the child, Robert Coy Brown, was airlifted to Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, but was dead on arrival.
The tragedy had several eyewitnesses, some of whom saw the actual impact, and another who called 911, but the most descriptive of the massiveness of the injuries came from Sarah Adams, who lives near the railroad tracks. She said she saw the boy being carried from an ambulance to a helicopter as emergency crews held up a sheet to shield the sight of the father’s mangled body.
“They did warn us that we didn’t want to see it,” reported Adams.
Brown’s older sister, Michelle Dooley, said the boy and his dad “Loved to fish,” and that due to there being no insurance on her brother, the family is hoping for donations to help with funeral and burial expenses. “They are going to be buried together,” confirmed Dooley.
Trenton Police Chief Timothy Traud said that “All of the locomotives do have cameras and we will be requesting to view the footage concerning this crash.” He had no speculation as to whether or not his request would be honored by CSX, even though CSX Spokesman Bob Sullivan said that “CSX is working with Trenton Police in the investigation of the accident.”