Jefferson Troester, 43, railroad engineer

Jefferson Troester
Jefferson Troester
Posted: May 23, 2012

Jefferson “Karma” Troester lived life with a zeal that was hard to capture, said his family.

Mr. Troester, 43, of Claymont, Del., who fulfilled a childhood dream in 2010 by becoming a train engineer, died Friday, May 18, when a roll of newsprint fell on him as he opened a railcar door at the Inquirer and Daily News’ printing plant in Upper Merion.

Born in Philadelphia, Mr. Troester grew up in Southeastern Pennsylvania, where he was involved in the Boy Scouts and graduated from Oxford Area High School in Chester County.

Mr. Troester served in the Air Force in the late 1980s. After returning, he went into automotive repair, specializing in Volkswagens and kit cars. He went on to become a welder and millwright before he was hired by the Upper Merion & Plymouth Railroad.

He had many interests and approached each with enthusiasm and passion, his family said. He was a singer, a musician, an avid reader, and a virtual database of movie and video game trivia.

A representative of the family said Monday night that the family wished to make no further statement at this time.

On Friday, Philadelphia Media Network spokesman Mark Block said, a train hauling six railcars loaded with 4-foot-by-4-foot, 1,800-pound paper rolls pulled into the Upper Merion plant’s railway siding between 9:15 and 9:30 a.m. A three-high stack of newsprint rolls had apparently shifted, Block said; one roll toppled out onto the loading dock, and a second onto Mr. Troester, who was standing just outside the car. He died at the scene.

Mr. Troester is survived by his wife, Sarah “Kit”; his parents, Louis and Cherie; a brother; two sisters; two nephews; and three nieces.

A memorial service will be at 4 p.m. Thursday, May 24, at the Chandler Funeral Home, 2506 Concord Pike, Wilmington. Friends may call from 2 to 4.

Memorial donations be sent to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. For more information, call 603-222-2300.

Contact Suzette Parmley at 215-854-2594 or sparmley@phillynews.com.

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