Villa Park man killed by train

By Michael Wamble
Posted Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Michael J. Dunscomb, a 2003 graduate of Addison Trail High School, sought the same independence most young men want.

“He moved to Villa Park because he wanted to live on his own,” said Michael’s father, James Dunscomb, of Addison.

On his own, the young Dunscomb had become a warehouse manager at Cardinal Cartridge in Elmhurst, his father said.

And for less than a year, Dunscomb lived on the 300 block of Ardmore Avenue, along the Union Pacific railroad tracks.

At 3 a.m. Saturday, Dunscomb was struck and killed at a railroad grade crossing by an eastbound freight train, Villa Park police said Monday. He was 22.

Although the incident is currently under investigation, Dunscomb’s father said police told him his son may have “slipped and fell” walking near the gravel side of the crossing.

Authorities said all indications are that signals were functioning properly.

Steps to increase railroad safety in Villa Park has been a

top priority for residents and officials following the death of Kristen Bowen, a 14-year-old girl, who was killed in Feb. 2006 while trying to take a shortcut over the tracks at Ahrens Avenue between Lombard and Villa Park.

Both villages successfully sought funds from Union Pacific to install fencing across the four cul-de-sacs near Bowen’s home to deter illegal crossings.

Still, Villa Park Trustee John Davis, a railroad safety advocate who supported fences, said municipalities can only do so much to promote safety.

“When the lights are flashing, people should to step back 40 feet from the tracks,” Davis said. “This death is a sad loss.”

A memorial service is scheduled for Dunscomb from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday at Humes Funeral Home, 320 W. Lake Street, Addison.

Dunscomb is survived by his mother, Karen Babica, of Addison; his father; his four brothers, Jason, Kevin, Scotty and Zane; and grandparents Lester and Judith, of Lombard, and Joseph Satavia, of Addison, and Judy Schreiner, of Riverside.