Lackawanna and Wyoming Valley RHS
A Child's Christmas
For many years the Lackawanna & Wyoming Valley Railway Historical Society has partnered with Steamtown to operate a series of Holiday Trains to our Moscow Station. November 2017 was no exception. There were five trains scheduled to operate over a three day period and all trains were sold out quickly. Preparation for these trains begins early in the year and as train time nears Chapter members decorate both the Passenger and Freight Stations. Santa is on hand to visit with the children; there are various activities for the children including a Holiday store where they can purchase small gifts and trinkets.
One thing that we do on occasion is have a raffle to help cover the cost of operating the stations. This year's raffle was a Lionel "O" Lackawanna FM Trainmaster. Through the generosity of a friend this locomotive was donated to us.
On Sunday November 26th the last train arrived with many families and excited children. The line to visit Santa was long and along the way was the table where raffle tickets were being sold. One family, the Husband, Wife and two young boys where standing next to the table and before long the youngest boy was studying the Trainmaster on display. He looked at it from the front then from one side and then the other. He was just fascinated with that locomotive! He asked if it was our train. When told it was a prize for the lucky person who bought a chance he tugged on his mother’s coat and asked her to buy a chance. Shortly after, his father returned and he asked his dad to buy a ticket. Well, the father bought three chances and off they went to visit Santa.
At the end of the day and after the train headed back to Scranton the winning raffle ticket was pulled. As I was handling the raffle I returned home with the locomotive and winning ticket. Later that evening I phoned the winner and found that he lived close by. We made arrangement to meet the next afternoon.
I went to the designated meeting point and when the winner arrived I recognized that he was the one with the two boys from Sunday. We spoke at length and he told me that he youngest son, who is 3, talked about the locomotive all the way back to Steamtown. He said that they will wrap it up and put it under the Christmas tree for him.
He didn't capture a good picture of him unwrapping it but sent me a photo afterwards.
The photo shows, from left to right; Grandfather Stephen Klem Jr, Brodie Klem and Stephen Klem IV.
Look at that smile on Brodie's face. This is one happy child!
And you can see from the gifts in the background that the boys (and their Father) love trains.
I know one thing; it made me very happy when I saw how excited he was looking at the locomotive and then seeing his smile when he received it.