Officials examine train-related death

By R. Scott Lohman

Investigation is continuing in a freight train incident which resulted in the death of a DeKalb man.

Donald L. Bruce, 28, of DeKalb, was pronounced dead at 12:50 a.m. Friday at Kishwaukee Community Hospital, DeKalb County Coroner Dennis Miller said.

Miller said Bruce died from massive head injuries received as the result of being struck by a westbound Chicago & Northwestern freight train.

DeKalb Police said the accident occurred at about 12:21 a.m. just west of Fourth Street on East Lincoln Highway.

Miller said Bruce was walking toward his car which was across the railroad tracks. Bruce was in a grassy area between the tracks and the sidewalk and apparently had turned around to talk to his wife, Miller said. When Bruce turned around, he was struck by the train.

Bruce was hit by one of the train’s cars and not the engine, Miller said.

He also said no autopsy will take place, but a toxicology report will be done as standard procedure. A toxicology report is used to help determine what chemicals are present in the body.

The coroner’s office and the DeKalb Police Department will continue to investigate the incident, Miller said. He also said a coroner’s inquest will be held at a later date.

This is the first train-related fatality of the year in DeKalb County, Miller said.