NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Five of the seven people killed in the Amtrak derailment in northeast Philadelphia have been identified, and their families have been left in shock and mourning.
The train was speeding moments before it crashed, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. More than 200 people were injured in the derailment that plunged screaming passengers into darkness and chaos when the accident happened Tuesday night.
As CBS2’s Tony Aiello reported, still missing Wednesday night was Bob Gildersleeve, a Maryland man with family in New Jersey.
And as CBS2 and 1010 WINS reported, a Brooklyn educator was identified as a victim in the deadly derailment on Wednesday night, according to several sources.
Sources said Derrick Griffith, the dean of students at Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn was killed in the crash. Griffith was also the founding principal at CUNY Prep School, WINS reported.
“Thank you for all of the thoughtful texts and tributes on Facebook for our founder, our Principal, our friend Derrick Griffith. We are all struggling with this terrible news and trying to find our way during this sad time. CUNY Prep will be closed tomorrow for day school and CTA students. The staff will be there to mourn together and provide support to those in need,” the school said in a statement.
Another victim was 20-year-old U.S. Naval Academy Midshipman Justin Zemser.
Zemser was a cadet at the U.S. Naval Academy and a member of the Navy football team.
Susan Zemser said she was expecting her son to arrive home at about 10:30 p.m., 1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reported. But when she went online to see if the train was on time, she had learned it derailed.
She said she received a call that Justin had died early Wednesday morning.
“He was supposed to come home last night … at 10:30. And when I went online to see, you know, if everything was on time, they said there was a derailment. All night we kept on calling hospitals but nothing. And then we got the phone call this morning that my son has passed.”
“Our son was Midship Justin Zemser, he was born on March 25, 1995,” she said. “He was his high school valedictorian and was just finishing up his second year as midshipman at the United States Naval Academy.”