My brother John Stuart Locke, aged nineteen, died on April 19, 1966, at Lincoln College in Lincoln, Illinois, when a train hit him at a crossing. I heard about it on the radio in the biology lab at Evanston Township High School in Mr. Martin’s class, where I was a fifteen-year-old freshman.
My father came to pick me and my sister. We went down to Lincoln to get John’s things. My grandparents lived in Pontiac and we met them there. John was buried in Taylorville, Illinois, the family’s old hometown. It was hard for all of us.
A short time later, at home, I heard the doorbell ring and went to answer it. it was John. Strangely, when I saw him, I forgot he was dead. I thought he had come home from college. He came in the door.
I was going to go to the kitchen to get my parents (who had not heard the doorbell, I learned later) but John said he couldn’t stay long. He gave me a hug, said goodbye, and went out the door. I closed it, then opened it again to see him leave- but he wasn’t there. I ran to the kitchen to tell my parents.
Richard Locke, Jr.