Dome Lounge Car – Stabled at Council Bluffs
The Walter Dean was built in 1955 by American Car & Foundry as dome lounge No. 9005. It was sold to Auto Train, then reacquired by Union Pacific and named the Walter Dean in 1990.
The car is named for Walter Dean, who began his service with Union Pacific in 1942 as a dining car waiter on the Challenger. At that time, the dining car crew slept in the dining cars and kept mattresses in a hole under the floor.
When Mr. Dean moved into the lounge car on the City of Los Angeles as attendant, he was responsible for stocking and maintaining the bar and providing service to the passengers. His clientele included such stars as Mickey Rooney, Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra, who frequently traveled on the train. He also served President Harry Truman during his “Whistle Stop Campaign” of 1948.
When passenger service ended in 1971, Mr. Dean remained with Union Pacific, serving special guests and staff on business car trips that operate for railroad, corporate and community relations events. He passed away in Omaha, Neb., on Oct. 18, 1999
Photo Credit UP Official Website