Farewell GCSR! A picture is said to be worth a thousand words. Sometimes a picture and a thousand words just can't tell the story. What do you see here? A crumbling railroad on the verge of collapse, or a small operation under pressure? Can you see Fenton, Missouri in this picture, or a bankrupt and collapsing Daimler-Chrysler Corporation? Maybe big brother BNSF knocking on the door with an open hand? American Railroads Corporation had it all unfold as Chrysler shut down and curtailed operations in Fenton, rendering the GCSR sister Missouri & Valley Park Railroad useless. MVP filed a discontinuance of operations and BNSF began looking to collect for a laundry list of items related to the roughly 2 miles of track MVP leased from BNSF to serve Chrysler. The sum of 1.7 million was sought to cover the tab for the two miles, which a court decided was to be paid. Now, where to find that kind of money from a small corporation made up of mostly switching operations? The main asset was clear, the Gulf, Colorado & San Saba Railroad. Roughly 67 miles of railroad serving a rich deposit of high dollar frac sand and plenty of grain to boot. Santa Fe sold the operation in 1993 to GCSR. A study to sell this property was done by the railroad during the failed SP/SF merger as they wanted to streamline service. BNSF looked to purchase the railroad back, yet the offer was denied. The 1.7 million dollar settlement was a heavy straw that broke the camels back. With a Writ of Execution, the GCSR property was seized and placed up for auction. Bad business ethics by American Railroads may be the first we think of. How about the actions of Daimler-Chrysler? American Railroads Corporation wasn't the only one that felt the pain of bad business ethics on the part of Chrysler. Many companies were forced to shut their doors and even more families left with little to no income. The government sent billions to Chrysler, but the damage was done and no aid would come to MVP. The track at GCSR was never stellar and ATSF had trouble with the railroads infrastructure too. This wasn't a big railroad outfit where every mile mile looked to be a picture of railroad engineering perfection. We all have become accustomed to seeing the perfection of big Class 1's and large shortline holding companies with big investor interests. Smaller operations that do it on their own where a CEO can be found at the throttle are run differently. The scene doesn't depict the normal track condition for the GCSR. Instead, a recent derailment coupled to the BNSF legal issue left little money available for emergency track repairs. This temporary fix mended by hand and sweat of honest men will keep the trains running until money can be allocated to make permanent repairs. The GCSR was just 20 days into the seizure and the scheduled auction was nearing. The railroad filed for bankruptcy to get better footing and looked to emerge with new life. Although, the snowball had started and the railroad was sold to keep the customers served and local families working. A Notice of Exemption filed by Heart of Texas Railroad became effective on January 20, 2012. The new owners will close the deal on January 28 and the GCSR will be a fallen flag as Heart of Texas Railroad begins operations.