(Notes from conversations with: Lew Matis, Larry Spencer, and many others.)
Knowing that we will miss mentioning someone who has contributed, I can't resist calling your attention to some outstanding people:
Ed Latham - Passed away recently - Remembrances and Photos by Larry Spencer
Doris Arlene Thiesing Orem
the Dolores Rotary Club
We owe a debt of gratitude to the farsighted group that decided to save Goose #5 in 1952.
In 1952, members of the Dolores Rotary Club purchased Galloping Goose No. 5 from the court-appointed receiver for $250. It was then put it on display in Flanders Park in Dolores as a reminder of the town’s railroad heritage. The first names that came to mind are: Jack Kinkade, Bill Wagner, Dr. Ed Merritt, check back in a few days for the others,... this site is a work in progress.
Doris Arlene Thiesing Orem (Life Member from the 80's): more to come...
GALLOPING GOOSE 5—WAYNE BROWN’S LEGACY TO DOLORES
For forty-five years, Galloping Goose No. 5 sat idle in Flanders Park, with time slowly taking its toll. In March 1997 the Galloping Goose Historical Society, under the guidance of Wayne Brown, President, received a grant from the Colorado Historic Fund and permission from the Dolores Rotary Club to restore No. 5 to operating condition. Thus began a year-long project directed by Wayne and assisted by a core group of volunteers. The task went through many stages: disassembling and rebuilding the rear passenger compartment; building new frames and re-upholstering the passenger seats; cleaning and overhauling mechanical systems such as the motor, the power truck and brake system; and finally repainting and re-lettering the railcar when it was fully reassembled.
This all occurred under the guidance and direction of Wayne Brown. He brought mechanical, woodworking, and electrical skills to project, but more importantly, it was his drive, determination, and outright tenacity that brought the project to a successful completion. He had to negotiate and coordinate with private contractors who carried out some of the more difficult work. Furthermore he had to motivate, even cajole a diverse group of volunteers to show up one or two days every week, fair weather or foul, for an entire year.
A testimony to the success of restoring No. 5 was an invitation from the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad to operate No. 5 for several days in June of 1998. This was followed in August of that year by an invitation to operate on the Durango and Silverton Railroad. Every year since, No. 5 has operated on one or both railroads. Plus, No. 5 also operates right here in Dolores for special occasions such as Escalante Days, for tour groups passing through Dolores, and for local school field trips. No. 5 is a central attraction in Dolores and an important reminder of the Town’s history and its founding by the Rio Grande Southern Railroad. All of this can be attributed to Wayne Brown. He has given Dolores, the Galloping Goose Historical Society, and all the fans of the Galloping Geese and the Rio Grande Southern Railroad a most valuable and enduring legacy.
Wayne “Father Goose” Brown (lower right, with beard) is shown with several of the volunteers he lead during the year long restoration of Galloping Goose No. 5 in 1997-98. Shown l to r in the back are Lew Matis, Jim Granflatten, Frank Gonzoles, Steve Holly and Teri Holly. Below on the lower left are Pam Wagner (daughter) and Janet “Mother Goose” Wagner (Jennings), the GGHS bookkeeper who was responsible for financial compliance with the Colorado Historic Fund Grant that provided the major funding for the restoration of No. 5.