Andy Sperandeo


Aley, Jeff A
 

Forwarded from the MR Facebook account:

With a heavy heart, I’m sad to report that Andy Sperandeo, who has been a part of our lives at Model Railroader magazine for more than 30 years, has died.
As some of you know, Andy had been fighting cancer and other ailments, and the combination finally caught up with him earlier today.
Andy started work at Model Railroader in 1979, becoming editor in 1993. In time he became executive editor and upon retirement a few years ago became a contributing editor. Readers today are most familiar with Andy through his monthly The Operators column. He has also edited our Great Model Railroads annual since its inception.
Information on services or memorials remains pending at this time.

Neil Besougloff
editor

 

I had the great pleasure to know Andy through our interactions at Prototype Rails.  He will be remembered by me as “a great guy” – something that outweighs even his many contributions to our hobby.  R.I.P.

 

-Jeff Aley

 


Tony Thompson
 

       One of the nicest men I've known in the hobby, a skilled operator, and a great modeling expert -- Andy will certainly be missed.

Tony Thompson             Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705         www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history





rob.mclear3@...
 

Lost a good mate today, he and I model the same place and era, year in fact.   When he found out that I was doing the same he made sure that I was on the right track with it all.   Had many a conversation with him over the net and some over the phone although we never met.   That was supposed to happen on a trip to the States next year.   A great friend and a great bloke.   Very sad news indeed condolences to his family and friends and my thoughts and prayers go out to them.   There will be one heck of a model railroad up there when he teams up with all those that we have lost.   They have their yardmaster.   RIP mate.

Rob McLear
Aussie.


Scott
 

That is real bummer.  Andy answered a lot of my questions off list and the MRR forums and always answered emails.

I will build something Santa Fe to celebrate Andy's memory,

Scott McDonald


Mikebrock
 

I talked with Andy a month or so ago, asking him if he would be able to attend Prototype Rails 2016. He declined, telling me that his condition was too fragile for the trip to Florida. I realized from his comments that his time was probably drawing closer to an end.
 
Andy, as many have noted, was a significant figure in our world of model railroading and, of course, he was a major player in the operation of Prototype Rails in Cocoa Beach. He was a clinician in our first year and remained such until last year when he was unable to come. 
 
Andy mentioned once that he minored in Union Pacific...it being a participant in the Santa Fe crossing at Cajon...so we often discussed UP matters.
 
I believe it was Tony Thompson who said once, that one of the difficult problems of aging was watching one's friends pass on. So true. We've lost another.
 
Mike Brock


Jack Burgess
 

I am very sad to hear this although it isn’t completely unexpected. I’ve known Andy personally for decades when he “was Model Railroader” as its editor. I’d like to share a couple stories to celebrate his life as I knew him.

 

It was at, I think, the 1994 NMRA National Convention in Portland and many of us were out to visit some of the layouts as part of the LDSIG tours (which we could visit layouts via our own automobiles rather than by bus tours). Many of us arrived about the same time at a layout with some unconventional backdrops…beautiful storm clouds in one area, etc. Someone obviously had a talent for painting backdrops more typical of large oil paintings. It was a beautiful layout and I noticed Andy immediately talking to the owner of the layout about getting an article in MR. Several months later, that article was published. Back then, MR didn’t let its editorial staff go out on the road at corporate expense (I was told) but Andy came to national conventions anyway at his expense and still made the trip worthwhile for MR.

 

A more personal experience. At least a couple decades ago (and maybe earlier) and before the multitude of invitational regional operating weekends, there was Prorails, the original operating group. I’m not sure who all comprised Prorails but I know that it included Andy, Tony Koester, and David Burrows. They would call a layout owner somewhere and invite themselves to two-three days of operating on various layouts in a

that particular area.

 

So, one year, they and some others came to the Bay Area to run trains. As I recall, it was Andy, Tony Koester, Keith Jordon, and two other modelers, one who might have been Perry Squires. They flew into the Bay Area on a Friday and spent the rest of that day operating on Jim Providenza’s layout. On Saturday, they took the train to Dunsmuir in northern California and operated on John Signor’s layout and then spent Saturday night trying to sleep on Amtrak before disembarking Sunday morning to spend the rest of that morning operating on another layout here in the Bay Area. They were scheduled to operate on my layout that Sunday evening. I got a telephone call late in the afternoon that they were in their motel trying to recover (which might have meant taking a nap) but arrived in time for dinner. Then it was time for an operating session.

 

I can only accommodate four operators (one-person crews) so Keith Jordon volunteered to be Dispatcher…even though he had never even visited before. Andy was assigned the Merced Local which runs the length of the layout from Merced to El Portal at the western entrance to Yosemite National Park, setting out empties and picking up a couple of cars along the way. El Portal is a stub-ended yard which is entered by the Local engine first…which means that every car in the train has to be run around before it can be shoved into the correct siding. I was watching Andy as his train slowly rolled into El Portal. Most first-time operators then stop to study their Switch List before starting to sort out their consist, many times cussing at themselves under their breath for not setting out two cars on the same siding as outlined on their Switch List. But not Andy…he was studying his Switch List before he even arrived, figuring out his moves. As soon as he stopped his train, he was uncoupling and running around it to put all of the cars into their designated locations. He never stopped…as soon as one set-out was done, he went on the next. I described it later in any email to our YV Yahoo list as “poetry in motion”…never a wasted move, no stopping or slowing down. It was beautiful to witness.

 

Andy was a great friend and modeler…he will be missed.

 

Jack Burgess


John Hagen <sprinthag@...>
 

Andy was certainly one of the better know personages in model railroading for many years. I’ve known him personally and will miss him. My condolences and prayers to Andy’s family and friends.

John Hagen

 


paul.doggett2472@...
 

A sad loss to his family and the model railroading community.
Paul Doggett UK




Sent from Samsung mobile

"'Mike Brock' brockm@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:
 

I talked with Andy a month or so ago, asking him if he would be able to attend Prototype Rails 2016. He declined, telling me that his condition was too fragile for the trip to Florida. I realized from his comments that his time was probably drawing closer to an end.
 
Andy, as many have noted, was a significant figure in our world of model railroading and, of course, he was a major player in the operation of Prototype Rails in Cocoa Beach. He was a clinician in our first year and remained such until last year when he was unable to come. 
 
Andy mentioned once that he minored in Union Pacific...it being a participant in the Santa Fe crossing at Cajon...so we often discussed UP matters.
 
I believe it was Tony Thompson who said once, that one of the difficult problems of aging was watching one's friends pass on. So true. We've lost another.
 
Mike Brock


John Sykes III
 

First of all let me say that I've never been a big fan of MR.  But I think it was two years ago that I met Andy at the show in Cocoa and was very impressed with his knowledge of prototypical operations and his friendly and outgoing personality.  Meeting him was one of the best outcomes of attending that show (oh, and I finally learned how to pronounce his last name!) and I was looking forward to seeing him again at the 2016 show.  I know I will miss him.

-- John


michaelEGross@...
 

So grieved to hear of Andy's passing.  Long before I had met him in person, I had come to know and admire him in the pages of Model Railroader and other publications.  He was both a gifted and inspirational modeler as well as a generous and loving man.  So long, Andy.


Michael Palmieri
 

Andy was indeed a GREAT GUY.  I was fortunate enough to meet him almost 50 years ago and to see him regularly for a while.  I was a teenager and he was working at a local hobby shop while attending Loyola University, and later UT-Austin.  He was a valuable asset for this young modeler and railfan!

I last communicated with him for his 70th birthday, October 1.


Mike Palmieri - Fort Worth, Texas


Bill Welch
 

I am so sad to hear of Andy's passing. What a sweetheart of a man. Very generous and helpful always, he helped me get some resources from the David P.Morgan Library at Kalmbach. It was great fun to see how much joy he received from operating one of the yards on Bill Darnaby's layout. I am rather indecisive about hats but Andy clearly was not. He had very good taste in hats and looked so good in them.

Bill Welch


Charlie Vlk
 

Few could go in cold to a new railroad and smoothly operate a yard as well as Andy.

 

I think he would appreciate a variation of an old joke that I thought of when I heard the sad news…..

 

Frank Ellison appeared and told Andy, “I have some good news and some bad news for you.”

“The good news is that there is a great Model Railroad in Heaven and we operate on it every day…..the bad news is you’re Marked Up for Yardmaster next session”.

 

We’ll miss you, Andy!

 

Charlie Vlk

 


Bill Schneider
 

Although I’ve had the pleasure of operating with Andy just twice, I suspect that he would view the Yardmaster position as “good news”…. ;>)

 

He will be missed.

 

Bill Schneider

 

From: STMFC@... [mailto:STMFC@...]
Sent: Sunday, October 4, 2015 3:22 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: RE: [STMFC] Re: Andy Sperandeo

 

 

Few could go in cold to a new railroad and smoothly operate a yard as well as Andy.

 

I think he would appreciate a variation of an old joke that I thought of when I heard the sad news…..

 

Frank Ellison appeared and told Andy, “I have some good news and some bad news for you.”

“The good news is that there is a great Model Railroad in Heaven and we operate on it every day…..the bad news is you’re Marked Up for Yardmaster next session”.

 

We’ll miss you, Andy!

 

Charlie Vlk

 


Marty McGuirk
 

I’m going to miss Andy greatly.


My perspective on him may be somewhat unique. I got to know him when I started at Classic Toy Trains and was flattered when he suggested that I might find MR a better fit for my modeling and interests. So I joined the MR staff and he became my boss.  He was a fantastic mentor and friend (Honestly, I never really thought of him as my "boss"). He remained my friend after I left the magazine.


His knowledge of prototype and model railroading was encyclopedic. And he willingly shared that knowledge with anyone who asked. And it wasn't "book knowledge" either - he was a dedicated and meticulous craftsman - everything from his freight cars to his benchwork were executed with precision.


He seemed somewhat shy and withdrawn at first blush - but to those of us blessed to know him and call him friend he was a fascinating, fun loving person who enjoyed a good joke (especially a pun) and could discuss any subject - food, literature, movies, and sports as well as railroading - with gusto. 

Rest well friend, and suffer no more,

Marty McGuirk


Denny Anspach <danspachmd@...>
 

I have looked to Andy in the past, and in memory now, as one whose authority as a skilled and authoritative railroad modeler were not only unquestioned, but were also exercised in his scribblings  on behalf of an appreciative readership. He was one of the very last of editors in our hobby who wrote authoritatively as a modeler -with subject expertise-  letting his skills carry his many writings and articles: modeling first, journalism second..  This is far different than the current fad of journalism first, and subject/modeling expertise second (if at all).  

He joins a distinct  pantheon of fellow skilled railroad modelers who also knew how to edit and publish  that include: Al Kalmbach, John Page, Frank Taylor,  Linn Westcott, Tony Koester, Gordon Odegard, Paul Larson, and Bill Schaumburg,  Undoubtedly I have left some off this list, but not many.

Denny 

 
Denny S. Anspach, MD
Sacramento, CA