Former Crew Members

Harry Abbott

Harry was native of New Orleans and resident of Baton Rouge and passed in 2013 at the age of 69. He frequently made the trip from Baton Rouge to the LASTA Yard to participate in the physically demanding work and was a certified fireman on SP745. Harry served LASTA in many roles and always looked out for everyone’s safety. 

Retired from Exxon after 33 years of service as a First Line Supervisor, Harry also served over 10 years as a Truck Lieutenant for the St. George Volunteer Fire Department.

Patti Abbott

Pattie joined LASTA has been an active volunteer since 2004. Since she first joined LASTA, Patti has photographed all of the SP 745 excursions, Steam Fests and other events. Just as importantly, she has chronicled the seemingly routine work done at the yard on Saturdays, the otherwise unseen activities that are now archived in the LASTA website photo albums.

David Bartee

David is a past board and crew member that first worked with LASTA during the 2005 state-wide tour.  

Keith Bonnette

Keith volunteered as the Fireman on SP 745 during many of our early trips. 

Roger Brown

J. Roger Brown started volunteering for LASTA in 2002 after seeing write up about 745 in the newspaper. Early assignments included cleaning and spray painting the insides of both theater cars and then doing carpentry work on the interior of the Jefferson car and theater cars.

Glen Carl
Ray Duplechain

Ray Duplechain’s long and distinguished railroad career has taken him from the caboose to the front office. Ray began his railroading career at the end of the “steam era,” and he witnessed the transition to diesel-powered locomotives. Ray previously worked for the Southern Pacific and the New Public Belt Railroads.

Ray retired from the LASTA Board in 2012.

Charlie Gholar
Track Supervisor

Charlie is out in-house track expert.  He is retired from KCS Railroad.

Carl Gustafson

Carl first joined LASTA in 2017 and volunteered as our engineer for several of the Christmas excursions. Before relocating outside the area, he worked with the New Orleans Gulf Coast Railroad.


Mike Hankins
Support Crew

Mike Hankins passed away July 12 2006.  The “Hankins” crew car was named for his years of dedicated service.

David Honold
William Johnson

William began volunteering after the 745's rebuild was completed in late 2004. One of his first major roles was serving as the engineer when 745 went out on the mainline for the first time in 48 years.

During the 2005 Louisiana Purchase History Tour, he served as our engineer and documented the trip in his daily "Engineer's Journal" which can be found on the LASTA website.

Steve Levet
Gerry Lynch
Mechanical Advisor

As retired chemical engineer, Gerry’s years of experience in local industry steam applications has been most helpful. He has been with LASTA since 2002 and previously served as our Chief Mechanical Officer.

Marrie Morris
Support Crew
John Price
Danny Rawinsky
Eric Scholtz

Erich passed away unexpectedly on June 11, 2013 at the age of 50. Born in Reno, Nevada, and raised in Piermont, New York, he eventually relocating to New Orleans. Erich was the Chief Mechanical Officer for LASTA and an avid rail fan.

As a designer of geological, geophysical and oceanographic instrumentation, Erich worked for Columbia and Stanford Universities. His expertise employed him on projects on every continent, including multiple expeditions to Antarctica, and sailed with the Ocean Drilling Program and on the research vessels other organizations.

Al Talbot