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Rail Success in Kirkwood

Brad Choat
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Two of the seventy volunteers who keep the Amtrak station in Kirkwood, Mo. going. They celebrated 10 years on June 29, 2013. (KMOX/Brad Choat)

Two of the seventy volunteers who keep the Amtrak station in Kirkwood, Mo. going. They celebrated 10 years on June 29, 2013. (KMOX/Brad Choat)

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KIRKWOOD, Mo. (KMOX) - U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill and her husband Joe threw a party at the Kirkwood train station, Saturday, to honor the 70 volunteers who staff the Amtrak depot there.

McCaskill read a “thank you” from Vice President Biden and a speech she made on Capitol Hill, recognizing ten years of dedicated service by the volunteers.

“We are celebrating the best of this community, which are the kind of people who decided this station was worth saving. It’s now recognized as one of the best train stations in the country, ” McCaskill said.

Station manager Bill Burckhalter says he couldn’t ask for better support, “They really do run this station. They know what to do. When they first started, we asked them to come an hour before the train and stay twenty minutes after, then lock up and go home. That lasted about a month. Now, they just stay all day.”

Burckhalter says Amtrak ridership on the Kirkwood line continues to grow.

He says day trips to places like Hermann, Missouri are popular.

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