Creswell man killed by train identified

A man in his mid-50s was killed by a train in Eugene Friday afternoon.

Posted: Apr 7, 2021 4:29 PM
Updated: Apr 7, 2021 4:47 PM

EUGENE, Ore. – The man hit and killed by a train in Eugene on April 2 has been identified.

Police say Kevin Purkerson, 55, of Creswell was struck near Chambers Street and Railroad Boulevard just before 3 p.m.

He was reportedly walking west in the middle of the tracks when a train came up behind him. The train blew its whistle multiple times and activated its emergency brakes. Officials say the train was following the speed limit prior to the collision.

"This is why we constantly contact people who are on the railroad beds, and on the rails and near the trains. I personally have been on three pedestrian incidents here in the course of my 20 years here," Sgt. Dale Dawson of the Eugene Police Department said. "People just need to not be on the train property."

Officials said everyone on the train was uninjured.

The scene was cleared just before 5 p.m. that Friday. Train traffic along that portion of the track stopped for a period of time while the scene was cleared.

The Lane County Medical Examiner responded to take jurisdiction.

This came roughly a week after a pedestrian was fatally hit by a train while trying to cross stopped railcars in Corvallis. That death has been ruled accidental.

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