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As she watched Engine 11 go down in Honey Creek near her home near Moingona, IA; and found two men trapped in the creek, she risked her own life by crawling over the 750 foot Des Moines River Bridge in order to reach the Moingona Station, so she could round up a rescue party to save the two men, and send out a warning to stop the approaching Midnight Express Train before it reached Honey Creek.


As she made her way onto the bridge, her lantern went out, and she had to crawl over the bridge in total darkness.


She reached the train station in the nick of time, safe and sound, and the Midnight Train was halted, and the two men were rescued. Kate Shelley became a National Heroine as well as an American Folklore Legend.

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