Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

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CP169

Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

Post by CP169 » Tue May 31, 2005 4:22 pm

Saw this tidbit on the E channel this morning. Mel's father was a brakeman for the NYC on the Hudson Division. He suffered an on the job injury and was awarded $140,000 by a court. He then used the money to move the family to Australia.
Last edited by CP169 on Tue May 31, 2005 11:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

harmon44

Post by harmon44 » Fri Jun 17, 2005 8:04 pm

His father worked in the car dept at Harmon.

CP169

Post by CP169 » Sun Jun 19, 2005 6:23 pm

Thanks for the clarification. I could only go by what they said on TV. Does this mean that everything we hear on TV is not the absolute truth. What a suprise to me. I wonder if the holds for newspapers too.

latonyco

Mel Gibson

Post by latonyco » Thu Jul 07, 2005 2:45 am

Who really cares? I thought that this was a New York Central System forum not a show biz gossip column!

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Post by charlie6017 » Thu Jul 07, 2005 4:29 am

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NYCRR Car Dept. at Harmon

Post by ChiefTroll » Fri Jul 08, 2005 8:04 pm

As an historic note, the work of changing power at Harmon was done by the car department. Carmen disconnected the hoses and steam connectors, pulled the pin, signalled the engine to pull away, backed the replacement power onto the train, coupled everything up, made the air test, and then turned the train back over to the conductor.

They could easily have been mistaken for brakemen by someone who did not know of the subtle craft distinction.

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Re: NYCRR Car Dept. at Harmon

Post by Noel Weaver » Fri Jul 08, 2005 11:57 pm

ChiefTroll wrote:As an historic note, the work of changing power at Harmon was done by the car department. Carmen disconnected the hoses and steam connectors, pulled the pin, signalled the engine to pull away, backed the replacement power onto the train, coupled everything up, made the air test, and then turned the train back over to the conductor.

They could easily have been mistaken for brakemen by someone who did not know of the subtle craft distinction.
The same was done at New Haven with a straight power change. I believe
that if the outbound or inbound engine was handling cars to be detached
or attached to the train involved, then a trainman would be needed to
make the switching move. I do not know how much that was done at
Harmon but it was done quite often at New Haven.
Noel Weaver

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Post by shlustig » Sat Jul 09, 2005 7:46 am

At Harmon, there were several regular jobs advertised as "Rider Brakeman". These were individuals who were not part of a full crew.
When cars were added or dropped from a through consist (such as head-end traffic to / from the West Side) during the power change, the road engine crew would make the move with the cars and the rider brakeman would ride the cars. The road engine crew could not make switching moves, but could handle cars while making a single move to / from a through train.

Often, head-end traffic from several inbound trains would be combined to make a scheduled train consist for the West Side.

CP169

Post by CP169 » Mon Jul 11, 2005 11:19 am

Otto, just wondering when you're going to delete that rude reply from that outsider in California.

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Re: Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

Post by Jim Kaufman » Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:26 pm

Back in the 70's and 80's I worked with Mel's uncle, Ralph Gibson. Ralph, otherwise known as "Rotten Ralph" (but not in a meanspirited way), was an Hudson Div Conductor working the New York Conductors List. Ralph was a "heavy hitter", he would work a New York-Croton "bing-banger" round trip, and then maybe a New York-Albany Amtrak r/t in the same day (all under 12 hour "law" too!).
I always enjoyed working with Ralph, he was a fun guy (who never talked about his "nephew") to work with. I worked with him on Amtrak (normally 63/64, 68/69) and he was my Assistant Conductor a few times when I worked the Budd cars between Croton and Pouhkeepsie in the early 80's (back when the "Buffalo Chips" were invading Selkirk and I thought about working the "Locals" until I found how much it cost to work in Croton, cost of living, housing, etc. Besides, I was never "layed off" in Selkirk either)
The old line about Ralph was, "the sun never set on him, he was always working!"
Ralph lived near Peekskill, NY

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Re: Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

Post by Noel Weaver » Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:17 am

I also worked with Ralph Gibson out of New York on a job that made a trip to OW in the morning rush and in the afternoon rush it did a trip to OW followed by a trip to DV. It was a big money job with weekends off. Ralph was a wonderful person to work with and I enjoyed every trip on this job. I had regular jobs at different times with two different conductors on the Central side out of New York, Ralph Gibson on the Hudson and Sy Lobeck on the Harlem and two finer gentlemen I have never worked with anywhere on the railroad at any time.
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Re: Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

Post by wjstix » Fri Sep 05, 2014 4:50 pm

As I recall, years ago Mel said in an interview that as part of the settlement, his dad was given funds specifically for education / retraining, and used it to study electronics or computer programming. Eventually he found a good tech job in Australia so moved the family there when Mel was a teenager.

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Re: Mel Gibson's father worked on the Hudson Division?

Post by Dieter » Sat Oct 25, 2014 7:24 am

To add to the legend of the Gibsons; the family lived in Verplanck, the only town on the Hudson where the tracks do NOT run along the river's edge. the people there are referred to as "Pointers" and to be a Pointer, you have to have been born there or in nearby Peekskill hospital.

Verplanck was originally settled by the Dutch and you can still see Dutch faces there to this day. For being so close to NYC, there's a lot of intermarriage in the place and homes remain in the same family for generations, they don't leave. A big joke there is if you try to put the Christmas Tree anyplace but the same corner by the window that it's been put in for the last 75 years, there's a major family feud over it. Most of the people have good union jobs if not working for Metro North, and without a mortgage and with a low tax base, everybody has a nice car, a boat, a jet ski, a truck and another home in the Adirondacks. They seem to live the good life in small homes.

Gibsons; after the family left for Australia, they left lots of relatives behind. I had to laugh one night when watching a guy get off at Cortlandt (the new station between Crugers and Montrose) and he was a dead ringer for Mel Gibson, clearly a relative.

On the $140K Gibson's dad supposedly earned -- what you guys left out was Dick Clark's Ten Thousand Dollar Pyramid. Mel's Dad went on the show and took the grand prize. When Dick Clark asked Ralph what he was going to do with it, he said he was moving his family to Australia because he didn't like the way things were going in the States. Fact was, he wanted to keep is boys out of the draft and Vietnam.

I always wondered how 10K would get one started in Australia but now seeing he got 140K from The Central, it clears up how he got started down there. 150K back then would do the job quite comfortably. I think Mel moved Ralph to California to have him closer while Mel does his movies in the States.
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