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Never had the pleasure of meeting Skip but his warmth and friendliness always seemed to shine through his posts and especially his NYC Walking Tours. I was born in Brooklyn (US Navy Hospital) but was whisked away pretty quickly as my Dad was sent to the Pacific in late 1944. As a boy, I wished we lived in NY as I wanted to see the Lionel and American Flyer layouts and other things the city offered as I got older.

Skip's love of the city was apparent and I enjoyed some of the comments he would make in his posts. Lord bless your family and our prayers go out to them. Thanks Skip for many memories!

Last edited by c.sam
@Jerryrails posted:

Skip Natoli was not only one of my best friends but one of the most wonderful human beings I ever met. We have been buddies for over twenty years. Many know him as a passionate railroader, others know him as an amazing guitar aficionado, still more know him as a Yankee fan. My wife and I have been blessed to know him as a great human being. He was an administrator of the New York welfare system where countless people benefitted from his caring and compassion. If you had a train gathering, Skip made it sparkle, if you loved music, Skip made it much more fun, if you loved the yankees, Skip would proudly wear his satin Yankee jacket. More than anything on earth, Skip loved his children. He spoke of them constantly and adored walking the streets of New York City Holiday time with them and sharing the photos with us.

It is the nature of life to love and suffer loss. If we did not love greatly, we would not be so mournful when those we enjoy so much are taken from us. My wife and I will be life long beneficiaries because we knew Skip. He'll be with us every day in one form or another. Toot the whistles tonight for Skip Natoli.

Jerry, thanks for sharing your stories about Skip. Very touching.  Skip is a great role model for us.   My deepest sympathy to you.

The place, Strasburg PA, October 18th, 2019, 9:13AM waiting for things to get going with N&W 611.


I remember getting to Strasburg bright and early, 7:46 the first shot I took says. I don't remember seeing Skip walking around with some of the other folks that got there earlier, but I do remember when the line had started to form(before we found out cab tours would be going first), someone laughed behind me which came from Skip's group. A smile on his face, just like most of us had usually seen. I really wish I had bought the cab tour back then, I should have talked with him but alas.

So, that is not it. A few days later, October 20th, 2019, just after noon I'll say at the New Jersey HiRailers Party for the 50th Anniversary of OGR Magazine. I had actually been behind Skip about 5 feet or so before ducking under the cameras so I could get some shots in the back.


Definitely not the best shot(as Skip's eyes are closed) but preferably to the back of his head.

I always loved seeing Skip's layout in the magazine or pictures posted here or elsewhere on the web. Some of the topics he posted(or started) I would always get my nose in even if it was something like some of the old places in New York City that I haven't heard of. People like Skip just captured your attention with the topic at hand.

A great example, New York City Walking Tour

Skip will be greatly missed, my condolences to his family and friends.

Rich is right, he could get you in the Christmas spirit just like that.

I am going over to Tall Building Tuesday, which Skip started and where I have not posted in some time. See what I can find. Here's to you Skip.


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I am very sorry to read this sad news. My condolences to Skip's family.

Skip and I corresponded a few years ago regarding his extensive knowledge of the early rail lines along the west side of Manhattan. His enthusiasm for the splendor of NY City's Christmas wonders was contagious, inspiring my wife and I to take his grand "walking" tour some years ago. More recently, I've been working on a living room Christmas display, only the woodwork at this point, and I've been using the OGR spreads of Skip's cheerful Dept. 56 and his magnificent NY City layouts for ideas. As I am typing this, I cannot believe he has passed away.

Last edited by Paul Kallus

I’m in total shock hearing and reading this thread. Taken from us way too young. Skip and I always conversed at York and at the NJ Hirailers open houses. A true NYC expert whose layout was featured in the OGR magazine a few times.

The NYC Commodore Vanderbilt and the NYC Mohawk are on the garage floor lines dedicated to our friend, Skip.

My condolences to his family. He will be missed by all.  


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Last edited by Ted Bertiger

I think it was on the Tall Building Tuesday topic that he started that he and I were bouncing back and forth about the Empire State Building. The top of the building was to have a docking port for blimps which some of you may know. Skip had popped I think some of the plans as well as some pictures, all with the description of what it was going to be like. I don't remember if it was deemed too much or if the B-24 crashing into the ESB nixed it for sure. Either way, it was a delight to read Skip's information on the building and the blimps.

I just attended the first viewing of Skip at the funeral home.

Lots..and I MEAN LOTS of pictures of skip and family but a bunch of skip and Lionel trains, skip and the 1:1 as well.

Apparently he was diagnosed with  a rare blood disorder a few weeks ago and just started treatments when the Lord ultimately had other plans.

At this time I believe Skip is the engineer of the Twentiety Century Ltd. Head to a Yankee game in Chicago.

God Speed Skip! Thank you for the model train memories at the shows, the club, and the Bear Mountain Lodge Christmas displays decades ago.


He Loved the NYC!

Center photo of the Grand Central Terminal Transit museum TW Christmas Display


Bergen Co model RR club Pearl River NY show.


Choo choo barn.

Photos taken by me of family photos of Skips past.


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