2 Johnson County women among those killed in Amtrak train crash in Missouri

The derailed Amtrak train from June 27

Two De Soto women were killed in an Amtrak passenger crash on June 27, Missouri State Highway Patrol reports. Photo via Dax McDonald Twitter account.

Two women from De Soto were among four people killed in an Amtrak passenger train crash Monday in Missouri, the Missouri State Highway Patrol announced Wednesday.

Who were they? Rochelle Cook, 57, and Kim Holsapple, 56, were both killed in the crash which happened after the train struck a dump truck at a crossing near Mendon, Missouri, northeast of Kansas City.

  • In addition, a 82-year-old passenger from Kansas City, Missouri, was killed, along with the driver of the truck.
  • Another 150 people have been reportedly hospitalized as a result of the crash.

Fundraising efforts: A GoFundMe has been created to help cover the “final expenses” for the families of Cook and Holsapple, who were sisters, according to the page’s creator, James Hart of De Soto.

  • According to the GoFundMe page’s summary, Cook and Holsapple were on a four-day trip with their mother and a fourth family member.
  • The GoFundMe page had nearly reached its $15,000 goal by Wednesday night. Donations can be made here.
  • There is a difference in the spelling of Rochelle Cook’s first name as used by the Highway Patrol, compared to the name on the GoFundMe.

Amtrak crash details: An Amtrak passenger train headed to Chicago struck a dump truck at a railroad crossing near Mendon, according to a Missouri State Highway Patrol press release.

  • Seven cars on the eight-car train derailed.
  • An estimated 275 passengers were on the train, as well as 12 crew members, according to a release.

The investigation: Jennifer Homendy, National Transportation Safety Board chair, told the media at a briefing on Tuesday that the agency is gathering additional information about the crash, including downloading images from two forward-facing cameras on the train.

  • Homendy said NTSB is downloading an event recorder for information about speed of the train, when the locomotive driver blew the horn and whether the brake was used.
  • NTSB is also interviewing the 12 crew members, she said.
  • There was another media briefing scheduled for Wednesday afternoon, according to the NTSB Newsroom Twitter account.