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A grand and glorious trip like this can only happen when there is a huge arsenal of helpful and dedicated people. I want to say thanks to Albert Bailey, Jim Blasingame, Leon Butler, Art Chase, Josh Coran, Frank Dewey, Pat and Nancy Durand, Brandon Frazier, Mike Grunwald, Jan the dispatcher, Jack Klingbeil, Paul Lidren, Ben Parrish, Willow Peyton, Marty Quaas, Jim Reekie, Jim Sava, Bob Stout, Andy Tejral, Jerry VanThomme, Stu White and Fred Wing for making my trip extra special.

A special thanks goes to Jeff DeBroeck who took the whole day off work, drove his monster truck, took out one police car, got me into all the railroad's "secret" places and ran the camcorder for me.

A million thanks goes to Curt Rudd who went out of his way to make my trip an event of a lifetime.

I also appreciate the assistance and camaraderie to my work crew buds Frank Armstrong, Duane Frank, Rich Holzapfel, Daryl Kollander and Derek Winchester. If I weren't 11 years from retirement, I'd apply for employment with you guys.

My biggest thanks goes to Don Prince, retired Alaska Railroad yardmaster, who is truly a prince among men. He opened up his home to me, gave me a place to sleep, let me call long distance repeatedly on his phone, made my breakfasts and suppers plus packed my lunches, bought me Diet Coke, let me use his washer and dryer, gave me the exclusive use of his car, invited over his friends to tell me historical stories for my website, and listen to my stories. In the few short years that I have known Don, he has become a close friend indeed. And thanks also to Missy for sharing her home with me.

For their love and friendship, a special thanks goes to Terry, Laura, Anne and John Michael. They gave me up for eleven days and treated me like I king when I returned.

Thanks to you the reader who not only read the journal, but actually read the acknowledgements!

And to Jabba the Hut who sat next to me on my southeast bound Anchorage to Seattle flight, go take a long walk off a short pier!

John Combs

Chapter 11 | Index