Shoes Of Fatal Train Strike Victim Still On CTA Tracks, 3 Weeks On

April 23, 2019 - 9:36 pm
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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO)—More than three weeks after a 58-year-old Chicago man jumped in front of a Blue Line train, his shoes remain on the tracks where he was fatally injured.

The man, who lived in the 6300 block of Montrose Avenue, was struck by a northbound train around 1 p.m. April 1 at the Montrose Avenue station. He was pronounced dead about 30 minutes later, according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office.

A pair of blue and gray Sketchers gym shoes have remained on the outbound tracks near the booth where CTA agents sit, along Interstate 90 on the edge of the Portage Park neighborhood.

When asked whether the shoes were those of the man who died, one CTA employee answered in the affirmative and wasn’t sure why they weren’t collected in the aftermath of the fatality. It wasn’t clear if the man was literally knocked out of his shoes or if they were removed in the process of recovering him from underneath the train. Police have determined the death was a suicide. 

The CTA employee agreed that having the shoes remain on the tracks was unusual and suggested sending a message to agency officials.

Police closed the Montrose Blue Line station April 1 temporarily after a man was fatally struck by a train. (WBBM Newsradio)

The transit agency was then notified in an April 16 email, which requested that the shoes be removed.

An automated response on April 17 acknowledged receipt of the message and said, “Your information has been forwarded to the responsible management for appropriate corrective action. We appreciate your notification of this issue.”

Since then, the shoes have remained on the tracks, with several trains rumbling over them daily.

WBBM Newsradio on Wednesday reached out to the CTA media affairs office.

(Editor's note, Thursday April 25: The CTA did not return an email message seeking comment. But by Thursday afternoon, the shoes were gone from the tracks at the Montrose station.)