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The Iowa Interstate Railroad, which owns Qjs 6988 and 7081 ran them double-headed on a regular revenue freight from Iowa City, Iowa, to Rock island Illinois on the Mississippi river. The 2 Qjs then spent Saturday, 18th October, running excursions to raise money for flood the June victims in Iowa. The two Qjs crossing the Mississippi on a girder bridge and a trestle bridge brought back memories of Reshui, which I thought you might enjoy!
The noon Iowa Interstate Railroad train behind 6988 (last seen by me on Daban shed in 2004) headed toward Silvis, IL and then returned to Rock Island for 2 p.m. and 4 p.m departures. This involved unfenced Street running through a major City, Moline! Trip time was approximately 1.5 hours. The coaches were older commuter cars with windows that open. The public were advised, "Cars are not heated or air conditioned. Because of the historic nature of the cars, there are not lifts or other accommodations. Individuals needing assistance are asked to make their own accommodations to access stairs and seats. There are no restrooms on this train".
The 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. train crossed the Mississippi in the direction of Wolcott, Iowa and was headed by 7081, which also worked the 6 pm dinner train.
On Sunday, the two locos collected up the 8 coaches, 2 "private varnish" cars and box car and headed back to Iowa City with a couple of faithful diesels in tow.
I'm enclosing a few pictures of the event. The Qjs appeared in fine fettle so we look forward to more outings!
Glyn Dawson, Chicago, IL
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© 2008 Glyn Dawson