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SANTA FE GIVES RICHMOND CHILDREN AN EARLY CHRISTMAS

 RICHMOND, Calif., Nov. 24 ~PRNewswire~ -- Santa Fe Railway will provide an early Christmas treat for 200 Richmond-area children aboard the "Santa Claus Express" train operating between Richmond and Collier on Thursday, Dec. 3. Children from the Richmond Unified School District will ride a special train of Santa Fe passenger equipment, visit Santa Claus bearing gifts and enjoy refreshments served along the route.
 The first train, carrying 100 children and their teachers, will depart from the Santa Fe depot, 101 Garrard Blvd., Richmond, at 9:30 a.m., returning at approximately 10:30 a.m. The second trip will depart at 1 p.m., returning at 2 p.m.
 "We began this program in 1991, and it was very special to hear reports from Santa Fe employees all over the system about the excitement and joy that something as simple as a train ride and a small gift can bring to so many children in need," said Russ Hagberg, Santa Fe's vice president-Transportation at Schaumburg, Ill. Hagberg developed the idea of operating holiday-season trains on Santa Fe's main-line routes, for children with special needs.
 "Last year's response was so heart-warming that we have made a greater commitment to the program in 1992," stated Hagberg. "We will run a five-car train across our entire system this year, giving rides to 600 children from the Richmond, Fresno, Bakersfield, San Bernardino and Los Angeles areas in California."
 According to Bill McGinn, regional manager of operations for Santa Fe in San Bernardino, "During 1991, we conducted a series of trips in Los Angeles, Orange and San Bernardino counties. The crying need for special programs at this time of year was immediately evident by the reaction from the children and their parents and escorts. At the same time, Santa Fe employees who put together the trip felt good about bringing happiness to children whose situations often make our day-to-day challenges seem pretty insignificant by comparison."
 -0- 11~23~92
 ~CONTACT: Mike Martin of The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Co., 909-386-4484~


CO: The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway Co. ST: California IN: TRN SU:

JL-JB -- LA034 -- 0737 11~23~92 16:33 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 23, 1992
Words:359
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