School community mourns death of Maine West sophomore struck by train

Daily Herald report
Updated 9/18/2020 6:32 PM

The Maine West High School community is grieving the death of 16-year-old sophomore Joel Daube of Des Plaines, who was struck by a freight train Thursday afternoon in what police say appears to be a "tragic accident."

"Maine West High School and Maine Township High School District 207 extend heartfelt condolences to the family of Maine West sophomore Joel Daube," district spokesman Brett Clark said Friday.


"Joel was involved in many activities at Maine West including the band, where he was part of the drum line, swimming and cross country," Clark added. "His family shared that Joel's faith was an extremely important part of his life."

Daube was struck by the train about 5 p.m. near West Park at 600 S. Wolf Road. Police officials said safety gates were operating at that time.

Daube was transported to an area hospital where he died from his injuries.

Police are continuing to investigate but indicated Friday that Daube's death appeared to be accidental. Results of the autopsy by the Cook County medical examiner's office were still pending Friday afternoon.

After Maine West officials received the news Thursday, they put in place supports for anyone in need of help and sent out an email to all students and staff, Clark said.

Though instruction at the school continues to be done remotely, such emotional support has continued to be available since the spring, Clark said. This includes one-on-one conversations via Google Meet or Zoom when requested.

Daube's family has requested privacy as they mourn their loss.

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