Trainer congregants play good Samaritan to crash victims

By Patti Mengers, Delaware County Daily Times

Sunday morning services took on a new meaning April 3 for the faithful of Trainer United Methodist Church. They spent the day playing host to more than 200 passengers displaced from an Amtrak train bound for Savannah, Ga., that derailed after striking a backhoe on the tracks near Booth Street in Chester just before 8 a.m. Two Amtrak workers were killed and close to 40 people were injured.

The train came to a halt about 300 yards behind the church that is on the 3700 block of West Ninth Street in Trainer. Marcus Hook Trainer Fire Marshal Tony Capasso saw it as a potential place of sanctuary for the stunned travelers. At about 8:45 a.m. he contacted Trainer Borough Council President Jean Beck who in turn called the church’s administrative board chairperson, Marie Bowman.  Read more…

NOTE: The local CBS station also aired a TV news report on the Amtrak crash, including an interview with the Rev. James Ford, pastor of Trainer and Trinity UMCs.  And the News Journal online news outlet,, produced a short video interview with Sandy Hulton, a lay member of Trainer UMC, who recounts how the church served its Amtrak passenger guests.

Also see what a  Delaware County Daily Times editorial said about the much-appreciated hospitality Trainer and Trinity UMCs offered to the Amtrak crash survivors in Editorial: Delco opened its arms to train wreck victims.