Statement On the Death of Operation Lifesaver Co-Founder Sam Grayson
Operation Lifesaver, Inc. President Joyce Rose released the following statement today:
We are saddened to hear that Sam Grayson, who co-founded the Operation Lifesaver (OL) program 42 years ago in Idaho and became the first OL state coordinator, passed away November 2 in Boise at the age of 93.
Sam Grayson and Ed Schafer of the Union Pacific Railroad, along with the Idaho Peace Officers and then-Governor Cecil Andrus, started Operation Lifesaver in 1972 as a six-week public awareness demonstration project in Idaho. After Idaho's crossing-related fatalities fell that year by 43 percent, the program started spreading to other states; within a decade there were state OL programs around the U.S. In 1986 the nonprofit national Operation Lifesaver, Inc. office was created to help support the efforts of state programs and raise awareness of highway-rail grade crossing safety and rail trespass prevention.
The entire Operation Lifesaver organization extends its sympathies to Mr. Grayson’s family, and expresses our thanks to Sam Grayson and Ed Schafer for founding this wonderful rail safety education and outreach program, which today operates in all 50 U.S. States, as well as Canada, Mexico, Argentina, and Estonia.