A few days ago a friend of mine, Kurt Moose shared an old photo of him standing on the steps of BN GP30 2224 at Gold Bar, WA.
Used with permission
I figured that was a sign to write up a Tribute to the BN 2224.
BN 2224 is the ex-CB&Q 947 and was part of the first order of thirty GP30's built by EMD for the Burlington Route numbered 940-969 in 1962. The 947 was built in May of 1962. Here is a photo I found of the CB&Q 947 on rrpicture archives.
After the 1970 BN merger the CB&Q 937 was renumbered to BN 2224. It was 2-13-72 when I first saw the renumbered BN 2224 on a northbound freight at Auburn, WA with units 758/2228/9828/2217/2224. My notes say that both the 2228 and 2224 were in BN green, the others in their pre-merger colors so the 2224 was probably repainted fairly soon after the merger. The 1972 BN Annual shows the 2224 was assigned to Interbay for maintenance.
I managed to take quite a few photos of the 2224 starting in 1977. Here it leads southbound train #139 with units 2224/801/2225/1630 (GP30/F9B/GP30/GP7) at North Portal, WA 4-7-77.
Here is a roster of the 2224 at Interbay 5-30-78 showing the other side of the GP30.
A few years later the 2224 was showing some wear and tear. The paint was not holding up too well. Interbay on 9-8-80.
But by the next year the 2224 had a new coat of BN green to show off. This is at Auburn, WA 5-2-81.
A few months later on Wednesday 8-5-81 I caught the 2224 heading up train 1-130 towards Stevens Pass at 2:45 PM. This is between Gold Bar and Baring, WA. Leading is 2224/6312/6624/8085/6525/6642/6638. (GP30/SD40/F45/SD40-2/SD45/F45/F45)
On 1-22-84 the 2224/2518 are power for the Brownsville Turn seen here leaving Seattle's Stacy St yard and heading around the Wye and north towards Interbay and on to Brownsville, WA.
Almost three years later on 4-17-84 the paint still looks good on the 2224, seen at Interbay 4-17-84.
Later that month on 4-29-84 I saw the 2224 again on the Stevens Pass line, this time sitting at Monroe, WA by itself. Probably work train power.
The 2224 was still leading trains in 1985 as seen here on southbound #693 leaving Seattle 5-15-85. The trains power is 2224/1746/1761/SP 8297 (GP30/GP9/GP9/SD40T-2). Note all the woodchip cars on the head end.
I took one more photo of the train at South Seattle before I let it go.
In 1989 all of BN's GP30's were off the active roster and many were sent to EMD and MK to be rebuilt. The 2224 was one of them rebuilt by EMD to GP39E 2752 in July 1989. One of it's first assignments for maintenance after being rebuilt was Springfield, MO. Which is probably why I never saw the 2752. But this photo from trainpix.com shows the BN 2752 at Ft Worth TX in July 1990.
A few years after the December 1996 BNSF merger, the BN 2752 was renumbered to BNSF 2742 in June 1998 and classed as a GP39-2R. But it managed to keep the ex-BN green paint awhile longer. The BNSF 2742 was in the Seattle area 3-26-07 when I photographed it at South Seattle, WA.
I saw it once more on 8-25-12 at the Rabanco facility in Seattle between switching assignments. Note the headlight has been relocated to the nose, almost looks like a Burlington unit again!
Sometime between April and June 2013 the 2742 was repainted into the new BNSF scheme. All the photos I have seen of it since were taken in Illinois. But it looks great as this photo from rrpicturearchives shows.
Nice to know that this 1962 product from EMD is still out there in service today, and looking great.