MTA Police have identified the driver who was killed when his pickup truck was hit by a Long Island Railroad train Tuesday afternoon as Cutchogue native Frank McBride.
A westbound LIRR train struck the pickup truck driven by Mr. McBride, 34, about 1 p.m. Tuesday in Mattituck at Elijah’s Lane, according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and Southold Town police. The 2002 Chevrolet Silverado was traveling southbound, drove through the lowered crossing gate and was struck at the driver’s side door, the MTA Police said.
MTA spokesman Sal Arena said the train was carrying four passengers in addition to the crew, none of whom were injured.
Mr. McBride was a worker at the Southold Town waste transfer station and also a “very dedicated” member of the Cutchogue Fire Department, according to Cutchogue Fire Chief Bill Brewer.
“He came from one of those legacy families — his grandfather, father, brother, cousins, uncles — were all in the fire department,” Chief Brewer said.
Chief Brewer said Mr. McBride was “the type of guy who lit up a room.”
“His laughter and demeanor were contagious to everyone,” he said.
In October 2010, Mr. McBride married his wife, Laurie, in a ceremony at St. Isidore R.C. Church in Riverhead. He had no children, Chief Brewer said. His family has run McBride Farms on Oregon Road since 1966. Mr. McBride lived with his wife on Elijahs Lane.
Brian Anderson graduated from Mattituck High School a year after Mr. McBride in 2001 and said “everyone knew him.”
“I’d run into him and end up saying later on, ‘I just ran into Frankie McBride!’ ” said Mr. Anderson, who lives in Calverton.
“Growing up with people out here, being close with everybody, it’s really sad when something like this happens.”
Mike Malkush of Cutchogue said he has known Mr. McBride’s father, Rich, for almost 40 years. He often saw Mr. McBride at the transfer station. The two had just spoken the day before the accident, Mr. Malkush said, and talked about seeing each other on Tuesday at the services for Gary Zuhoski of Cutchogue, who died March 20 at age 57.
“Our last conversation he said to me, ‘Well I guess I’ll see you at the wake tomorrow at DeFriest [Grattan Funeral Home],'” Mr. Malkush said.
At the wake, Mr. Malkush learned from a firefighter that it had been Mr. McBride who was killed in the accident.
“He was just a happy, friendly, personable guy,” Mr. Malkush said.
The MTA Police Detective Division is conducting an active investigation.
Family members requested privacy and did not wish to speak publicly.
WITH JOE WERKMEISTER AND JOSEPH PINCIARO
Photo Caption: Frank McBride in a wedding photo from 2010. (Credit: Cutchogue Fire Department)