I have always been intrigued by mechanical objects (particularly transportation equipment such as cars, trucks, trains, and airplanes). I also maintain an appreciation for Canadian history. Nothing combines those two interests more perfectly than a steam locomotive!
In the early 2000’s, I had an opportunity to visit Canadian Pacific’s then newly restored Locomotive 2816 and see this impressive machine up close. That encounter cemented an admiration for steam that exists to this day. I began researching the history of Canadian steam operations on both the CP and CN, and quickly learned about the story of the 6060. Soon after, I became a member of the Rocky Mountain Rail Society. I discovered that the opportunity existed for a layman with no prior railway experience, such as myself, to volunteer and actively participate in 6060’s preservation. I attended my first Stettler work party in 2005, didn’t shy away from any of the “dirty work”, and quickly gained a wealth of hands-on experience in nearly all aspects of 6060’s operation.
By the late 2000’s, I had joined the Society’s Board of Directors and qualified as a student Fireman on 6060. I have remained very active with the Society, and recently assumed the role of President. My ongoing involvement with the RMRS has led a second career of sorts. While I maintain a full-time career as an I.T. Project Manager for a large manufacturing company in Calgary, I am now also employed seasonally as a fully qualified Trainman and Steam Locomotive Fireman for Alberta Prairie Railway.
The 6060 is one of the last (and best) surviving examples of large mainline Canadian steam power. She is a unique artifact of our nation’s history. Despite her need for extensive boiler refurbishment work, she remains as one of very few locomotives of its type with the potential to be returned to fully operational condition. It is truly an honour to serve as a volunteer, and lead the organization committed to making this a reality.