Gavin Wilkes

There was a question Gavin’s father asked him several times growing up:
“What is your passion?”

For many years, he wasn’t sure. He was a kid. He just wanted to have fun and maybe be a fighter pilot like Tom Cruise in Top Gun. And watch trains. He definitely wanted to watch trains when he grew up.

Gavin (in the glasses) with his siblings, in a caboose at the B&O Museum in Baltimore

Gavin (in the glasses) with his siblings, in a caboose at the B&O Museum in Baltimore

After high school and two less-than-successful years in college, he joined the US Air Force, spending three years fixing avionics on C-130 transport planes. After that, he had a moderately successful stint as a car salesman, making just enough to keep from starving. After that, he figured out his passion: taking care of people. He then found a renewed interest in aviation (thanks to his father spending 30 years as an airplane mechanic) and became a flight attendant, spending four years flying for an express carrier for US Airways (now part of American Airlines).

After that time of meeting new folks, seeing new places, and being gone from home far too often for his tastes, he changed things up again and entered into the customer service business, working in a call center for a car dealership in Virginia Beach.

Then, there was this girl…

Gavin and Kathy

Gavin and Kathy

Kathy entered his life in September of 2014, and things haven’t been the same for him. Just a few months after they met, they moved up to their current home in Christiansburg, VA, a lovely town in the middle of the Blue Ridge Mountains. They got married in October of  2015.

He found a job working in another call center, this time for a satellite provider, taking care of customers as best he could, whether they had billing or technical issues. While he was good at his job, there was a level of happiness missing, but his beautiful bride kept encouraging him to keep looking, knowing he would find something better suited to his skills. About 18 months after he started, he found just that, in the job he has now, working as a tech support specialist at Virginia Tech.

When not out taking pictures or videos of trains, he enjoys building Lego sets, going on adventures with Kathy, or giving his two cats the attention they think they deserve.

Freddie and Eliza

Freddie and Eliza

He also has an Instagram account just for his train pictures, which you can find here.