On the morning of September 10, 1959, a school bus carrying elementary and high school students from the Deer Park area became stalled on the railroad crossing at Loch Lynn Heights. The driver was unable to restart the engine, leaving the back of the bus across the tracks. When the crossing’s warning lights began to flash, he started pulling children out the front door. Before all could exit, the eastbound B & O passenger train struck the back of the bus, carrying it a hundred feet along the tracks.
Seven children lost their lives and eleven were hospitalized, some critically injured. Several others were treated and released in one of the nation’s worst school bus-train accidents. Nine students escaped without physical injury, but all who witnessed the impact were left with unforgettable images in their memories. Expressions of sympathy came in from across the country, and in the time afterwards, many new laws and safety precautions were put into place to prevent such an event from happening again.
Friends and family members of the children who were lost 60 years ago will meet at a memorial service at the site of the accident in Loch Lynn Heights on Tuesday, September 10th at 2 pm. The program will include brief remarks, music and placing of a wreath at the plaque near the railroad crossing on East First Avenue which displays the photographs and names of the children who perished.