Our union is in mourning after losing two of its active members this week: one in a work-related fatality and one in a traffic accident.
Ryan Sandy, 37, a member of Local 662 (Richmond, Va.) and a former local chairperson of LCA-201C, was killed in an on-the-job accident at 2:45 a.m., Monday, Oct. 12 in the Acca Yard in Henrico County, Va.
Sandy had been a member of SMART Transportation Division since February 2009 and worked as a conductor for CSX.
“We are all shocked and saddened by his passing,” fundraiser organizer Michael Carter posted. “It’s now our turn to give back and help his wife and their children as they deal with the loss of their loving husband and father.”
A number of worker fatalities over the past two years involving union workers went without an NTSB-led investigation, a situation that SMART-TD leadership made clear needed to be changed.
Across the country, Local 556 (Tacoma, Wash.) is mourning the loss of one of its officers.
Clayton Hoffman III, general chairperson of GCA-TMB (Tacoma Municipal Beltline) and local chairperson of LCA-TMB1, died in a fatal traffic accident Oct. 9. He was 43 years old.
The circumstances of GC Hoffman’s death are being investigated. He had been a member of the union since April 2004. He became GC on Oct. 1, 2012, and immediately set to work, said current Local 556 President Bill Price.
“During his time, Clayton negotiated one of the best contacts in shortline history for his members and brought those members to a livable wage,” Price said.
Price said that Hoffman served as a fierce representative of his fellow members and will be missed.
Local 556 brother Kody Henderson, local chairperson of LCA-001a, had this to say about his fallen brother:
“He was union leadership powerhouse and a union leader I looked up to. He was there when I initially took office in 2015 and helped guide me through this local chairman position. We would speak often, and as time went on we would reconnect to share stories and discharge stresses of dealing with management to one another.”
Brother Hoffman is survived by his brother, his sister and his mother.
“Clayton will be missed by all here at Local 556,” Price said.
The SMART Transportation Division offers its condolences to the relatives, friends and the brothers and sisters of Locals 662 and 556 on the passing of Brothers Sandy and Hoffman.
Cheryl Sneed, who worked in the office of the United Transportation Union for nearly four decades, including as an executive administrative aide in the President’s Department, passed away on Nov. 25, 2019.
She was 66 years old.
Cheryl started with the UTU in 1975 in the Word Processing Department, then progressed to the Legal Department and Bus and Yardmaster departments. She later handled correspondence and scheduling for former UTU President Mike Futhey and coordinated matters for the Board of Directors and Board of Appeals.
Among her many duties, she also helped to administer the union’s disaster relief fund before retiring in 2014.
A Mass of Christian Burial is scheduled for 10 a.m. Dec. 7, 2019 in St. Ambrose Catholic Church, 929 Pearl Road, Brunswick, OH 44212. Inurnment will be in Holy Cross Cemetery 14609 Brookpark Road, Cleveland, OH 44142.
Travis “Bowie” Andrepont, the secretary/treasurer of Local 1947 in Lake Charles, La., was killed before dawn on Tuesday, Aug. 20, in a rail accident in Beaumont, Texas.
Andrepont, 39, of DeQuincy, La., had worked for Union Pacific for 16 years, a UP company spokeswoman told The Associated Press.
Brother Andrepont became a member of SMART Transportation Division in January 2006 and had been the local’s S&T since January 2018. A conductor, he also was secretary of LCA 577 (sUnion Pacific-MP).
“His love for his wife and his children, surpassed everything else,” his obituary read.
He is survived by the love of his life, Paiton Andrepont; one son, Riley; two daughters, Shiloh and Amelia; his mother, Lesa Russell and step father, J. Russell; grandparents, Walton and Dellie Baggett and Audrey Andrepont, all of DeQuincy; one brother, Brian Andrepont of Houston; two sisters, Dawn Lewis and husband David of DeRidder, and Ashley Broussard and husband Jason of Lake Charles.
Gregory Gabriel Meehan, 87, passed away Wednesday, Nov. 29, 2017, at Jersey Shore University Medical Center, surrounded by his family.
Visitation was at Buckley Funeral Home, 509 Second Ave., Asbury Park, N.J., Dec. 3. Funeral Mass was celebrated Dec. 4 at Holy Spirit Church, 705 Second Ave., Asbury Park, N.J.
Born to Joseph and Helen Meehan on May 30, 1930, in Jersey City, Greg lived most of his life in North Arlington before spending his last years in Asbury Park, N.J.
Greg started his career with the Intercity Bus Company which became part of New Jersey Transit and worked as a bus driver for 37 years, many of them out of the Madison Avenue garage in Paterson, N.J. With great pride, he represented his fellow drivers in contract negotiations, grievances and arbitration issues as the chairman of his United Transportation Union local for more than 20 years until his retirement in 1992.
“Serving the UTU as a local chairman was a source of great pride for him,” his daughter, Kerry Dorio, said in an email. “He relished the opportunities at the conventions every four years.”
“We will always remember him tapping away at the typewriter via single finger, during his split to work on his union business.”
Greg was preceded in death by his wife of 61 years, Constance Meehan, and leaves five children and five grandchildren.
Lawrence J. Crist, 91, died Nov. 7 at the Sioux City hospital in Sioux City, Iowa.
Crist started his railroad career with the Illinois Central Railroad when he hired out as a brakeman and worked his way up to the position of conductor. A member of Local 493 in Waterloo, Iowa, Crist was elected to the position of Iowa state legislative director, which he held until his retirement in 1992.
Crist was a member of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church and the Knights of Columbus. In his free time, he enjoyed pheasant hunting, western books and movies, golf and spending time with friends and family.
Crist was preceded in death by his wife, Jeanine Crist; parents Benedict and Margaret Crist; two brothers and one sister. He’s survived by his two sons, Mike Crist and Kevin (Nancy) Crist; grandchildren, Audrey and Kena Crist; great-grandson, Kieran Crist-Kenworthy; and several nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Crist is interred at Mount Calvary Cemetery in Cherokee, Iowa. Click here to leave condolences for Crist’s friends and family.