On Thursday at around 9:30am the Merced Sheriff’s Office received a report of a pedestrian versus a train with a fatality.
Merced County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Tom MacKenzie reported that the Union Pacific Train was traveling north bound and had just started moving after coming to a stop to let another train pass. The victim was walking south bound between the tracks at S. Golden State Blvd. and Youngstown Rd. when the train reached speeds of 15 to 17 mph. Just before the train reached his position, he threw himself on the track in front of the train and was killed instantly.
The victim’s identity was not released until positive ID and the next of kin were notified.
Today, the pedestrian who was hit by train was identified as 37 year old Roger Eric Ash from Arizona.
After initial investigation, it appears that Roger Ash committed suicide by throwing himself in front of the train at Griffith Ave and Golden State Blvd at the Merced/Stanislaus County line.
It is unknown what prompted him to take his life at this time. The circumstances leading up to the suicide are still under investigation.