Associated Press staffer among dead in Amtrak derailment

Jim Gaines

PHILADELPHIA (KRON) — As the death toll climbed to seven Wednesday, from the catastrophic Amtrak train derailment in Philadelphia, details are emerging about the victims, including word that one of the victims who died was an Associated Press video software architect.

48-year-old Jim Gaines was aboard the train, after attending meetings in Washington, according to the AP. The father of two was returning home to Plainsboro, New Jersey, when the train derailed Tuesday night. His death was confirmed by his wife, Jacqueline.

The award winning software architect joined the AP in 1998 and was a key factor in nearly all of the news agency’s video initiatives, including a service providing live video to hundreds of clients worldwide, according to the Associated Press.

Gaines won AP’s “Geek of the Month” award in May 2012 for his “tireless dedication and contagious passion” to technological innovation.

The Associated Press said he was part of a team that won the AP Chairman’s Prize in 2006 for developing the agency’s Online Video Network.

In addition to his wife Jacqueline, Gaines is survived by 16-year-old son Oliver and 11-year-old daughter Anushka.

There was also word Wednesday that a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland was also among the dead.

In a statement, the school said the midshipman was on leave and on the way home when the train crash happened.

The statement says that out of respect for the privacy of the midshipman’s family, it is withholding the identity of the student for 24 hours following the notification of next of kin.

Hospitals have treated more than 200 people injured in the crash.

The train was carrying 238 passengers and five crew members as it headed from Washington to New York City along the nation’s busiest rail corridor.

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