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Hobart man, 23, dies when struck by train

September 26, 2006
BY KAREN SNELLING Post-Tribune

HOBART -- One day before he would have celebrated his 24th birthday, Seth Thomas of Hobart was struck and killed by a freight train.

Thomas, of the 900 block of west Third Street, was hit by a train on the Norfolk Southern railroad line at 7:21 a.m. Saturday, said Paul Castro, chief investigator for the Lake County coroner's office.

He was pronounced dead at the scene at 8 a.m. Hobart police said Thomas's body was found near Third and Wisconsin streets.

The incident is still under investigation by police and the coroner's office, which as of late Monday, had not categorized Thomas' death.

Thomas, friends say, was an accomplished photographer. They speculate he was standing on the railroad tracks to capture images of oncoming trains.

"He was a passionate and intelligent young man," said Hobart resident Robert Bailey, 23, who said Thomas was his best friend

"He was hardworking and dependable. I was proud to have known him," said Bailey, son of Post-Tribune reporter Lori Caldwell.

Thomas was an engineering student at Purdue University Calumet and employed by an Illinois engineering company.

A memorial service will be held from 3 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Hobart Elks Lodge, 3580 W. 61st Ave. in Hobart.

Contact Karen Snelling at 648-3106 or ksnelling@post-trib.com