Remembering Leslie Cacy, Conductor Killed by Train: Her Too-Brief Love Story

We all have a story. But some of them are better than others.

Leslie Cacy's tale was a great one, as you'll see — which only makes it sadder that it ended so prematurely.

As we've reported, Cacy — born Leslie Padilla — was working as a conductor on the Royal Gorge Route Railroad when, on Saturday, May 28, she fell off the rear of the train as it backed up and was killed.

Our post about this tragedy noted Cacy's recent marriage to Devon Cacy, the love of her life, and her devotion to animals; she'd previously worked at a veterinary hospital, where her good-humored care and concern endeared her to clients aplenty.

Turns out, however, that we barely scraped the surface.

After our item's publication, the Cacys and Padillas reached out, sharing photos and a beautifully written statement that reveals how a family vacation caused Leslie to fall in love with both Colorado and Devon, a table server at a restaurant where she dined.

And that's only the beginning.

Below, see the statement in its entirety, complete with information about Leslie's funeral, set for Monday, June 6, and a link to a GoFundMe page set up after her death. The account made her loss even more vivid for us — and we predict it will do the same for you.

Statement from the Cacy & Padilla families

It is with the heaviest hearts that we must write about the passing of our beloved Leslie (Padilla) Cacy. On the evening of Saturday, May 28, 2016, God called home a spitting image of his own son.

Born as their second daughter on August 5, 1987 to Daniel & Zandra Padilla Sr. of Corpus Christi, Texas, it was already apparent what a gem Leslie was; she had a beautiful soul and a heart of gold.

On a family trip to Colorado in the summer of 2008, they all enjoyed the beautiful ride of the Royal Gorge Route Railroad (RGRR). Unbeknownst to Leslie at the time, that was the beginning of the next 8 years of her life. She had just met their table server, Devon Cacy, who would turn out to be the love of her life, her soul mate, and her future husband. After that trip, Leslie vowed that she would be moving to Colorado, even with the doubt from her family.

Leslie started at RGRR as the Office Manager in July 2015, and with her bright mind and eagerness to learn, quickly enrolled in the conductor training class. Within two months, Leslie was fully certified as a conductor and was excelling in her position. Conducting was the perfect position for her to exude her extroverted personality, work with/interact with people, and to spread pure joy and excitement amongst each and every co-worker and train passenger she encountered.

Always wanting to achieve more and to further her education, Leslie began train engineer training only four weeks ago. She was a complete natural and picked up engineering very quickly. Leslie was also preparing for her GRE exam for entrance into UCCS's Geropsychology Master's program after completing her Bachelor's degree in Psychology. Her dream job was to be a geriatric psychologist with an animal emphasis.

The RGRR train played an integral part of their lives. Before being married on October 4, 2015 in Estes Park, Colorado, the couple invited all of their friends and family to partake in a first-class dinner on the train as their rehearsal dinner.

Leslie leaves behind an incredible legacy of genuine love, loyalty, pure happiness and joy. Any individual or animal that crossed paths with Leslie was truly blessed to experience the genuine ray of sunshine that she was. Any person that Leslie met was family to her, and was known to frequently call friends and family for no reason at all — just to say "Hi."

Leslie thoroughly enjoyed hiking, biking and camping throughout various scenic areas of Colorado. If there was a Cowboys football game on, she would find a way to watch it wherever she was — even if they got beat by Devon's beloved Broncos. What Leslie valued the most, though, was spending time with family and friends. She would choose spending time with family over any other option, cherished every moment she got to spend with you, and always greeted you and said "see you later" with a huge hug and a kiss.

Equally as important to Leslie were her fur-babies. She treated every dog or animal as if they were her own, and stopped to meet every dog she saw during her day. She strongly believed in adopting and giving dogs a second chance, especially in adopting senior pets. Leslie was also known to be able to recall the dogs that she encountered as a Client Care Specialist at the Fremont Veterinary Hospital when she saw them and their owners out in public.

The Cacy and Padilla families greatly appreciate the tremendous out-pour of love and support during this unfathomable process. The Royal Gorge Route Railroad family has also been incredibly supportive. We ask the media for privacy as we get through this difficult time.

Services are scheduled for Monday, June 6 with Visitation at 10 a.m. and the Service at 11 a.m. All services are located at the Canon Community Baptist Church in Canon City. Flowers should be sent to the care of Harwood Funeral Home (516 North 10th Street, Canon City, CO 81212).

We have set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds for Leslie's memorial:

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts