Dupont community steps up following deadly derailment


DUPONT, Wash. -Investigators are still working to determine the cause of a deadly Amtrak train derailment in Dupont, Washington, which left three people dead and dozens injured Monday. But amid the chaos, so many people stepped up to help any way they could.

Those in Dupont say the derailment happened in their backyard, and naturally, when tragedy strikes, they wanted to take care of their own.

Patrick Lewis, a co-owner of McNamara's, was on his way to his company Christmas party when he heard about the derailment on I-5.

"We're a really tight-knit community and I was like, 'What can I do?,'" Lewis said.

He immediately called Dupont City Hall.

"I got food, water, coffee...I want to hit up the first responders, those guys stand on that freeway freezing. My brother-in-law is a firefighter, my other brother-in-law is a police office, my other brother-in-law is an ex-colonel in the Army, so that's one of those things we just have service on the mind."

And it's the city itself that has service on the mind.

"It's a culture of standing up for the next man," Lewis said. "It's just the way we've always been. We don't need any credit. We can cook all day. Part of our mission statement says nourish the neighborhood. Well, our neighborhood ended up being down at that train trestle and on the freeway."

So Lewis and some volunteers put together 60 sandwiches and coffee and they went to those who were responding to the tragedy.

"It's the right thing to do. And if it's the right thing, we do it. That's how we measure everything we do," said Lewis.

Lewis says he wishes he could have done more, but everyone in town stood up and helped out to the point where the first responders had everything they needed. 

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