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Doug Horstman, former Oregon State Legislative Board Chairman, 1954-2014

CLEVELAND, April 15 — Douglas S. Horstman, former Chairman of the BLET’s Oregon State Legislative Board, passed away after an extended illness on April 6, 2015.

Brother Horstman, 60, was a Union Pacific locomotive engineer who joined BLET Division 362 (La Grande, Ore.) on May 1, 1977. He held continuous membership in the BLET until the time of his passing. 

For many years, Brother Horstman served the Brotherhood in various elected offices. He served Division 362 as Legislative Representative, and then represented all BLET members in Oregon on legislative and political matters as State Legislative Board Chairman. He was also active in the BLET’s National Association of State Legislative Board Chairmen.

Several times Brother Horstman was called upon to serve the BLET in Washington D.C. An effective lobbyist, Brother Horstman traveled to Capitol Hill to lobby members of Congress on railroad safety and other issues of importance to railroad workers. He also represented the BLET on various Working Groups within the Rail Safety Advisory Committee, a joint labor-management-government committee that examines rail safety issues and makes rail safety regulatory recommendations.

Brother Horstman is survived by his wife, Gerry.

“Brother Doug Horstman was a true gentleman who eloquently and professionally represented the craft of locomotive engineer whenever called upon to advocate on behalf of our membership,” said Dennis R. Pierce, National President of the BLET. “Brother Doug was a dedicated union member and officer who fervently believed in the cause of the BLET and actively participated in our efforts to improve the lives of working men and women. He was a proud locomotive engineer who will be truly missed by all those who knew him. On behalf of all men and women of the BLET, I extend my most heartfelt condolences to Brother Horstman’s wife Gerry and his family and friends.”

Brother Horstman was an avid outdoorsman who enjoyed golf, mountain biking, and spending time with nature. Donations in memory of Doug Horstman can be made to Blue Mountain Wildlife in Pendleton, Ore. The group rescues, rehabs, and educates about all birds especially hawks, eagles, and owls. Donations can be made online ( or mailed to:

Blue Mountain Wildlife
71046 Appaloosa Lane
Pendleton, OR 97801

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

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