It sure seems like growing up near Mopac influenced a lot of us. I'm no exception.My childhood home was located near Tower 18, a crossing just northeast of Fort Worth of the Cotton Belt and Mopac/Katy joint line between Fort Worth and Whitesboro, Texas. By the time I was able to watch trains on my own at this location the UP merger had already happened but Cotton Belt and MKT were still independent.A few miles north of this location is a railroad crossing known as McDonald's crossing. Trains will often stop here when the signal ahead is red to avoid blocking the few roads crossing the main in this heavily populated area. Once when I was a teenager, I had just arrived to see the stopped train and was taking a closer look when the crew invited me inside the cab. It was a neat experience that stayed with me for years. Through the years I have modeled all the railroads of Fort Worth, but none more than Mopac. I remained a contemporary modeler and changed with the times leaving my Mopac painted locomotives behind, until the Rail Yard SBW caboose was released. I sold much of my "modern" collection and changed focus back to the 1980s with a big emphasis on Mopac equipment.That cab ride really stayed with me. It was in the wee hours of the morning, but when I crested the hill at McDonald's crossing and saw the clear signal in the distance for the first time, I have to admit it was quite a thrill. I work for BNSF, so I don't get to run that territory often, but I sure do enjoy when I do.Ryan Harris
Fort Worth