Woman, 75, Finally Eats at Formerly Segregated Dining Car

By Melissa Noel
The last time Dorothy Flood took a train to visit family in the South, she was not allowed to sit in the dining car because of the color of her skin. Now, more than six decades later, the 75-year-old’s wish of eating a meal in a train dining car has come true. Flood flew in May from Houston, Texas where she lives, to Colorado to get on the Royal Gorge Route Railroad and have the meal she has always wanted. As a child Flood used to travel from Newark, NJ to North Carolina each summer with her grandmother. She always wondered why when the train reached a certain part of the country, she had to move. “We would get to the Mason Dixon Line, and I noticed that all the Blacks would go to one end of the train and whites would go to the next,” she said. “I would ask my grandmother why and she would say its not your problem, its their problem.” Recently, when she was asked by the activities director of her retirement home if there was something that she wanted to do all of her life, eating in the dining car of a train was the first thing she thought of. Flood was served a dinner that included grilled salmon with pesto, roasted vegetable orzo pasta, seasonal vegetables and triple chocolate mousse at a private table on the Royal Gorge Route Railroad “It was just prefect. It was first class, number one,” she said. “I just thought about my grandmother and said grandmother this is for you and I.”
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