In Memory of Eric Minton - "GG-1"

Discussion in 'News, Announcements & Introductions' started by PRR 60, Jun 29, 2016.

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  1. Jun 29, 2016 #1

    PRR 60

    PRR 60

    PRR 60

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    It is with sadness and shock that I announce that Eric Minton - "GG-1" - passed away on Tuesday, June 28 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Details of his death are not known at this time.

    Eric spent some of his early years in the New York and Philadelphia area where, like many kids of that era, he became a fan of the Pennsylvania Railroad, epitomized by the iconic electric locomotive, the GG-1. Eric's life took him into show business where he worked behind the scenes with touring companies such as Ice Capades and at major performance venues in Honolulu, Hawaii. His work put him into contact with some of the biggest acts of the era such as the Beatles and Elvis Presley.

    Eric was one of our long-time friends here at Amtrak Unlimited. He was a member of the moderating staff and was part of the planning committee for the Gathering. He participated in AU events, and also was active at On Track On Line, where he was in chat just this past Sunday. He was always quick with a joke, with occasional gaffs that were a little reminiscent of Yogi Berra.

    Most of all, Eric was a kind and gentle man who had an infectious smile. I searched for a photo that I thought expressed what I felt was the true Eric, and found this one that he used as his Facebook cover photo. He was a kid at heart, and this expresses it perfectly.

    From all the staff at AU, our deepest sympathy to Eric’s family and friends. He was a one-of-a-kind, a friend, and will be missed.

    Eric.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 29, 2016
  2. Jun 29, 2016 #2

    AmtrakBlue

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    :(

    So sad to hear this. He will be missed.
     
  3. Jun 29, 2016 #3

    Bob Dylan

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    Sad news indeed, but now the Angels will have another friendly, smiley person to help make their day!

    Condolences to his family and his manyfriends those of us that knew him were truly blessed! Thanks for the nice tribute Bill!

    I first met Eric @ the St Louis Gathering where we shared a Room and did the same in Seattle for the Next Gathering.

    We also rode the SWC together along with the traveler on the way to Philadelphia for the last Gathering he attended.

    His stories of his travels,about Show Biz and his special love for his granddaughter are my fondest memories of this fine man!

    RIP, Mahalo and Aloha my friend, bet you and Patrick are in the cab running the Angel Express and taking pictures!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2016
  4. Jun 29, 2016 #4

    pennyk

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    :(

    Thank you Bill for a well expressed tribute.
     
  5. Jun 29, 2016 #5

    CHamilton

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    Thank you so much for the wonderful memories.
     
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  6. Jun 29, 2016 #6

    caravanman

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    I met Eric in Las Vegas on my last visit to America, a real nice guy. So sorry to hear this sad news. R.I.P.

    Ed.
     
  7. Jun 29, 2016 #7

    Ryan

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    My heart goes out to his family, I'm sure that this is a difficult time for them.

    Eric was a class act, and I always enjoyed chatting with him. We're a lesser community now without him.

    Thanks for the nice tribute, Bill. The picture is great.
     
  8. Jun 29, 2016 #8

    jis

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    Eric was a dear friend who lightened up the lives of all that he met. He will be missed deeply. With much sorrow I bid you adieu my friend. May you rest in peace. Heartfelt condolences to his family and mane dear friends....
     
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  9. Jun 29, 2016 #9

    saxman

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    Oh no! Eric was just in chat with us on Sunday night as always saying Aloha and Mahalo as we came and left. I'll always remember the big HD video camera he would take the Gatherings. Not to mention his love for the GG-1.
     
  10. Jun 29, 2016 #10

    SarahZ

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    Oh my gosh! :( That is shocking and sad news, indeed.
     
  11. Jun 29, 2016 #11

    Shanghai

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    Sorry that Eric is no longer with us. He was a very positive influence on AU and OTOL.

    Best wishes to his family. Rest in Peace, Eric.
     
  12. Jun 29, 2016 #12

    jebr

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    :(

    Condolences to his family and friends. May Eric rest in peace.
     
  13. Jun 29, 2016 #13

    Everydaymatters

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    Eric - well after I got over the shock, my first thought was the memory of him giving me hints on how to take pictures in the Kansas City train station. We were together on the Gathering Committee since its inception and it's hard to believe he is no longer a part of this. Eric, along with Patrick (WhoozOnFirst), another of the original Gathering Committee Members, are probably traveling the rails on the highest line together.
     
  14. Jun 29, 2016 #14

    AKA

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    Aloha Eric
     
  15. Jun 29, 2016 #15

    grounded flyboy

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    I have wonderful memories of Eric. We first met 8 or 9 years ago at the LA Union Station Amtrak birthday celebration. He had his granddaughter with him and we had a great day enjoying all of the activities. I was flying to Las Vegas the next day but Eric would have nothing of it...he invited me to ride to Vegas with him. We stopped at his ex-wife's house in Fullerton as we left town to pick up a couple of cats for Eric's new house in Vegas. I stayed in the car but could see thru a picture window as he and the wife chased among the 20 cats in the house. They both came out with the kittens and their arms were covered with claw scratches. Eric loved his cats. I'm guessing there are many more than two at the house at this point!!

    As we drove into the desert, his Land Rover air conditioning gave up. I'm pretty sure it was warmer in the vehicle than it was outside! That is the first time Eric told me his car was on it's last legs!! And he gave me that sideways snicker we are all familiar with...and then we both busted out laughing. I was just worried about getting all the way across the desert. Not only did we complete the trip but I rode in that Range Rover many more times over the next half dozen years. On each visit he discussed the old ride was on it's last legs...it never failed to be funny! He did let go of that car a couple of years ago.

    Eric will be missed. Truly a gentleman and a gentle man.
     
  16. Jun 29, 2016 #16

    Acela150

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    The first and only time I met Eric was at the 2012 Gathering in Philly. :) His smile was warm and his attitude wonderful. I remember that during the gathering he was quick to point out a good looking lady ;) as that summer I was going through a hard time in my personal life. I also remember during the tour of the Wilmington Shops he made a quick joke to the staff asking if they could build him a GG-1! Which quickly got a laugh out of the group. I also remember his story of how he grew up along the Market Frankford El and had his super duper camera with him to film the entire ride in the hopes that he would be able to pick out his childhood home. I hope he was able to find that house!

    As Eric would say Mahalo! Mahalo for the wonderful memories you gave us! And as always Aloha to an amazing friend. :)

    I would like to make a motion that we move Eric to our Honored Members Category. A well earned title for our friend.
     
  17. Jun 29, 2016 #17

    Railroad Bill

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    I am also saddened by the word that Eric has passed away. I met him for the first time at the St Louis Gathering and always enjoyed his conversations about his life in stage production. He had an infectious smile that always permeated the train rides we made together. Everytime I see that GG-1 in Harrisburg, I will think of him.. I will miss him. RIP Eric.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 29, 2016
  18. Jun 29, 2016 #18

    AlanB

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    The staff did that earlier this morning around the same time that Bill posted the sad news.
     
  19. Jun 30, 2016 #19

    oldtimer

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    Eric, RIP, may you have high greens on all journies!

    It is hard to express my feelings at this time. Eric was one of the/ first AU members that I met in person many years back. This happened in the Metropolitan. Lounge. Eric and I met many more times there, AU trip or not.

    I really appreciated Eric's humor. We also shared a passion for photography and model railroading. Eric motion pictures and N-scale, me still photos and HO-scale. Maybe it was the fact that the first HO engine I purchased was a GG-1 and last weekend our club set up at an outdoor festival under a 120 x 40 tent and the only picture in the local paper was of my PRR train led by a newer GG-1!

    I know that AU has suffered a loss, but Eric left this world a better place.

    I hope to join Eric and Patrick for journeys on the other side, please God not too soon.

    Al aka Oldtimer

    :unsure: :unsure: :unsure:
     
  20. Jun 30, 2016 #20

    Acela150

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    :)
     
  21. Jun 30, 2016 #21

    gswager

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    Sad to hear that but he did left his legacy to us. Mahalo to Eric for his valuable contribution for us train foamers, all type!
     
  22. Jun 30, 2016 #22

    hessjm

    hessjm

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    Wow, what a shock. It was just a short time ago that we talked on the phone. He was in good spirits and was hoping that maybe this would be the year he could join us in Denver.

    I believe the first time I met Eric was at the Boston Gathering, we became friends right away. One time Eric stayed with me here in West Michigan so he could attend a remote controlled railroad gathering near Lansing. The host of this gathering had designed the software to build consists and control travel on the railroad that encompassed his entire basement. Eric spent a couple of full days there dispatching and running trains all the time with a huge smile on his face!

    I had the pleasure of visiting Eric numerous times in Las Vegas. Eric would either pick me up at the Greyhound station or at the airport depending on the route I took in. JoeG had one of the first rides in the infamous Land Rover, and he is not exaggerating one bit! We used to pump premium into that puppy because that's about the only way it would run! Those last legs were pretty long legs and as JoeG noted the gag never got old.

    As Bill noted Eric had close contact with tons of great entertainers during his career. I think one of the most dear to him was Red Skeleton. Red had traveled to Hawaii to do a show and was pretty fatigued from the travel to the island. Just as he was going on Red collapsed and Eric carried him off the stage. Eric always remarked how frail Red was. During one visit to Las Vegas, Eric and I visited a Red Skeleton show that was off the strip and was only available a few days a week. This tribute performer did such a wonderful job tha Eric waited and met the performer after the show to trade stories about Red.

    Even in Las Vegas, Eric had his show business connections. Through those contacts we were able to get backstage passes at Caesars Place to see Elton John and Jeff Dunham. Whenever he knew an AU member was going to visit Eric went out of his way to make sure the visit was memorable.

    I think it was during the Gathering in Philadelphia that Eric persuaded JoeG and I to travel out to Las Vegas/Boulder City to work the Santa Claus train for the Nevada State Railroad Museum. The rubber bands held up and we always made it out to Boulder City! We all worked as conductors for a weekend, finishing the "tour" off by going to have prime rib at the Railroad Pass Casino. We were persuaded to return for both the Santa train and to work Thomas too. Great times.

    Eric will be missed.
     
  23. Jun 30, 2016 #23

    AlanB

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    Joe,

    Another performer, of sorts, that I know was very dear to Eric was Peggy Fleming. He had worked with her many years ago when he toured with the Ice Capades. And whenever the two of them were in the same city, they would get together for lunch and memories. :)
     
  24. Jun 30, 2016 #24

    hessjm

    hessjm

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    Alan,

    I had forgotten that. Eric always had positive things to say about the performers he worked with. He was proud that he was able to present every entertainer in their best light! Correct me if I've twisted things up, but one of the first projects he worked on went on to become One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest.

    I just remembered another tidbit he told me about Dolly Parton - she is really short - true fact!
     
  25. Jun 30, 2016 #25

    Caesar La Rock

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    :( RIP, this is sad news, but all of us will remember him and his legacy.
     
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