"Takin' Twenty" with the Virginian Brethren by Skip Salmon
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Thu May 24 08:19:54 EDT 2012
Last night I had the pleasure of "Takin' Twenty" with ten of the
Brethren and Friends of the Virginian Railway. I told the Brethren about
last Saturday when I was able to open a time capsule planted in 1987,
for a boy's scouting ministry called Royal Rangers, at the District
Assemblies of God Headquarters, on Flat Top Mountain in Ghent, WV. 1987
was the 25th Anniversary of the group, started in 1962, and 2012 is the
50th Anniversary. I was District Commander in 1987 and asked leaders and
boys to place in the time capsule what they thought 2012 would be like.
I passed a list of these items around last night and the Brethren picked
what they thought were the best suggestions: (1) "We will be have
battery and solar powered cars; (2)"You will shop from home and not have
to actually go to the store" and (3) "A wrist watch-TV-phone can talk to
anyone on the planet". The capsule also contained items from 1987
(newspapers, photos, coins stamps, patches, etc.) as well as a personal
letter signed by President Ronald Reagan to the group, to be read in 2012.
The Jewel from the Past is from February 2, 2006: "The 'Virginian
Railway' shotgun stirred a lot discussion. No one, including 'Slick'
Inge, could remember ever seeing a shotgun with similar markings. They
said there were a lot of VGN people who carried pistols, but no
shotguns. However, the idea that is was used during the Strike of 1920
was a possibility, since no one present last night was involved in the
strike. Inge recalled an incident with a pistol involving brakeman C. T.
Wade, Jr., brother of Linsy Wade. C. T. dropped his piece at Wyco and it
hit the steps of one of the F-M diesels and fired, hitting him in the
leg. Harry Bundy reminded me of the time we added double bullet-proof
glass and metal protective sheets to the cab of an SD45 in Roanoke
Shops, for a modern strike at Westmoreland Coal Company in the 1980s".
I showed the Brethren a news article from the Salisbury "Post": "NS Crew
Robbed at Gunpoint"..."Armed with a shotgun and hand gun, two masked men
boarded the cab of an NS freight stopped at the 300 block of East
Council Street in Salisbury, NC at 11 PM, on April 29, 2012, and took
wallets from engineer and conductor".
I reminded the Brethren about tonight's event at O. Winston Link by the
Roanoke Valley Preservation Foundation and my "Past and Future of the
Virginian Station" power point presentation with artifacts displayed.
WSLS Channel 10 NBC will air an interview at noon today they did last
week at the Station, with Alison Blanton and I, to promote this event.
The Brethren will be my special guests and I plan to salute them as part
of the occasion.
Passed around was the latest "Turntable Times", newsletter of the
Roanoke Chapter NRHS with photos of Phase I Construction of the VGN
Station on the cover. Shown was a photo of the latest Norfolk Southern
Heritage unit, New York Central SD70ACe #1066. Note: The Virginian
Railway Heritage unit in "Trainmaster" colors will also be an SD70ACe
and numbered #1069. Also passed around was a photo of last Sunday's
eclipse showing a Texas windmill with the Sun being eclipsed by a
Then there's this: A Texas farmer goes to Australia for a vacation.
There he meets an Aussie farmer and gets to talking. The Aussie shows
off his big wheat field and the Texan says, "Oh, we have wheat fields
that are at least twice as large." Then they walk around the ranch a
little, and the Aussie shows off his herd of cattle. The Texan
immediately says, "We have longhorns that are a least twice as large as
your cows." The conversation has, meanwhile, almost died when the Texan
sees a herd of kangaroos hopping through the field. He asks, "And what
are those?" The Aussie, fed up with the Texan's bragging replies with an
incredulous look, "What, don't you have any grasshoppers in Texas?"
Time to pull the pin on this one!
Departing Now from V248,
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