Here is a picture I made of my old friend Andy Kern in 1976.
When the 208 ruptured the firebox throat sheet in Elizabethton that day in 1967 that ended the steam days on the railroad, they sent for the just-retired Andy and took him to Elizabethton before they would ever move the crippled 208. He climbed in her, and said that she was done without major surgery, and he wasn't going to operate. The next day diesels showed up.
Andy had another skill as well, tomato farming. I don't know what kind of mojo he used to grow those big red tomatoes, but to this day I have never had a tomato as good as the ones Andy would give me in the summertime when he was alive. I don't know if Andy has any people still around the Johnson City area, but if he does I would sure like to talk to them. He was a great guy and one of my favorites!
A U.S. Army veteran, Andy was born in 1892 and died in 1978, with burial in the Mountain Home National Cemetery in Johnson City.