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Local News

Coroner Releases Name of Man Killed by Amtrak Train

A 57-year-old man has been identified as the person who was struck and killed by an Amtrak train Sunday in Santa Barbara in what authorities say was a suicide.

The Santa Barbara County Coroner’s Office released the name of Thomas Michael Drennan of Santa Barbara on Tuesday after his family was notified, calling the death a suicide, according to Kelly Hoover, a spokeswoman for the Sheriff’s Department.

Emergency personnel were dispatched at about 2:20 p.m. Sunday to a report that a man had been hit by a train at Palermo Drive, near Las Positas and Modoc roads, according to Santa Barbara fire Battalion Chief Robert Mercado.

Drennan was pronounced dead at the scene.

Several witnesses reported seeing Drennan walking on the tracks with his back to the oncoming southbound train, Santa Barbara police Sgt. Eric Beecher told Noozhawk.

“The engineer tried to alert the man with his horn, and tried to stop the train,” Beecher said, but was unable to do so.

Investigators found a suicide note in a backpack that was left near the tracks, he said, and they remained on scene for an extended period, with the train stopped on the tracks.

The collision was the second between a pedestrian and train Sunday, since another pedestrian suffered minor injuries when clipped by a passenger train near Garden Street in a separate incident.

» Click here for free suicide prevention resources that are available 24 hours a day.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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