Like grandfather like grandson: Grandpa of Middle Village, Queens leaves DiMola 1940 Lionel steam locomotive through estate cleanout
My grandfather might have left the station, but his train lives on.
As I mentioned before, an estate cleanout is a type of service most rubbish removal companies provide when someone passes away. Usually, after family members of the deceased person have gone through most of the person’s belongings and taken everything they want, they will hire a garbage disposal company to completely get rid of all remaining items and trash.
This particular estate cleanout in Middle Village, Queens, was just like an other, except for one minor detail — it was for my own grandfather.
My grandfather, Frederick William Tucker, died in 2003, and he would have turned 87 years old today. I thought it would be only fitting to feature an item I received from him when I did an estate clutter cleanout of his Queens home.
After he passed away, my family and I went to the house and sorted through his possessions, deciding what we wanted to keep and what we wanted to give away. There was so much to choose from — from my grandmother’s jewelry and antique china, to my grandfather’s car and vintage vinyl records. We gave all leftover items to charity. My team and I cleared out all remaining garbage.
It was interesting to clear out my own grandfather’s house after his passing. I grew up going to my grandparents’ house as a kid, sitting on the couches and making sure to put coasters on the coffee table. Then, as an adult, I had to take those same pieces of furniture and dump them into my garbage truck.
But I did find a few treasures that I will never throw away. For example, I found my grandfather’s Lionel train set in one of the spare bedrooms of the house. The train engine (pictured above), which dates back to 1940, is just one piece of an entire set. When I was a kid, the only time I saw the train was around Christmas time. Every year, my grandfather would set it up around the base of his Christmas tree in a perfectly round 5-foot circle. The train traveled on a set of iron tracks. This locomotive engine is extremely heavy — this piece alone weighs 3 pounds!
I keep the main locomotive on display in my office, but the other pieces are stored safely in a box. It’s nice to know that even though my grandfather might have left the station, his train lives on.