I wish to thank Dr. Henry Malcolm Steiner and Randall W. Kirk of the University of Texas at Austin, Texas, for their guidance. I also benefited from the example of Charles P. Zlatkovich, of the University's Bureau of Business Research, who presented new and daring ideas in rail transportation.
Charles Stafford, Doug Johle, and many other friends helped me learn the railroad while I worked as a telegrapher-clerk at Taylor and Austin, Texas. At the Frisco Railway's Market Research Department in St. Louis, Missouri, I was privileged to work with a number of dedicated marketing professionals, among them Bob Rodefeld, Ron Cook, and Dick Lewis.
My gratitude is extended to the authors whose works I have referenced, especially John G. Kneiling of Trains magazine. He said what he felt should be said, whether it flattered the rail industry or not. His honesty has revealed many new opportunities for the railroads.
I wish to thank my parents, Leonard and Meta Overbey, my brother Dennis, and my sister Ramona. My first twenty years were spent in and around our family's service station, which provided both an education and an unshakeable faith in free enterprise and competitive markets.
Most of all, I thank Gail Ann Urhahn Overbey, my wife. She accepted the loss of many evenings and weekends to this project and saw the manuscript through innumerable revisions. Without her help, this book would not have been possible.