A pickup truck was struck by a train just west of the Cyr Exit on Tuesday morning, Feb. 19. The incident occurred at the railroad crossing off Daigle Lane. The driver was Roy Shutter, who graduated from Alberton High School and joined the Navy in 2012.
He was driving out of a small subdivision when the westbound train struck his vehicle squarely on the passenger side. The Burlington Northern Santa Fe 125-coal car locomotive dragged the truck a half mile down the track before it was able to stop.
Montana Highway Trooper Jourdon Gulick was one of the first to respond to the scene and said Shutter was partially conscious when crews cut him loose from his seatbelt. He was transported to a hospital in Missoula by ambulance.
THE COLLISION happened around 9:40 a.m. just west of the Cyr Bridge off Old Highway 10 West near Alberton. The Frenchtown Rural Fire Department was one of the first emergency crews to respond to the scene. It was early afternoon before the truck was removed from the tracks and train traffic could resume.
The crossing at the location where Shutter’s truck was hit does not have arms that come down when a train approaches, but is marked with railroad crossing signs. The cause of the incident is unknown and under investigation.
Shutter sustained several injuries, including head injuries, and was in stable condition at the hospital as of early this week. A GoFundMe page was set up for Shutter to help cover medical expenses. His father, Bill Shutter, posted a “thank you” to those who love and support his son. “We are slowly seeing improvements every day,” he wrote.
A CaringBridge account was also set up to keep people updated on his recovery. There has been an overwhelming amount of support and prayers for Roy Shutter. As of Sunday, more than $14,000 had been collected from family and friends to support a goal of $20,000.
On Friday, Feb. 22, Shutter was taken out of ICU and is showing signs of improvement every day, according to the online updates. “He’s tough and we’re going to win this,” his father stated.