James T. Lyttle: b. 1867 d. 11 November 1898
David Lyttle: b. 1875 d. 3 April 1905
James T. Lyttle: Block C, Row 6, Plot 24
David Lyttle: Block C, Row 6, Plot 30
On 10 November 1898, engineer James Lyttle suffered severe injuries in a freight train accident, 1½ miles east of Shuswap, British Columbia. He died the following day.
The explosion of the engine boiler, discovered about 20 feet from the overturned cars, was most likely the cause of the incident, which also killed brakeman A. E. Reid and injured one other crewmember.
The sympathy of the community was evident in the large numbers who attended the funerals of Lyttle and Reid. Covering the funerals of both men, the Herald newspaper wrote, “While railroading has its certain dangers, we are apt to forget that much of the loss of life and maiming of good men is largely unnecessary; that it is due to the neglect and indifference on the part of corporations.”
At the time of his death, James had a wife, Isabella J. Lyttle, and a young son, Frederick. Another son, James, had died at the age of one year, just a few months prior to his father's death.
Sadly, seven years later, James’s brother David Lyttle was also killed in a CPR accident, six miles from Golden. The freight train ran into a rockslide and was derailed, the locomotive and four cars going over the embankment into the Kicking Horse River below. Engineer Lyttle was caught under the wrecked engine and killed instantly, while Fireman Dickey had an arm and two legs broken (he later died in Golden hospital). The rock that had caused the accident was so large that it had to be blasted out afterwards.
David was just 30 years old when he died, leaving behind a widow and two young daughters.