So, in the middle of an email to the W's, mom weighed in on the issue. She turned out to be dead set against the train. She once took a train trip, which I remember fondly, probably because I was a kid and staying in your seats was NOT required. Come to think of it, that's probably why she remembers it so negatively... My two sisters and I are within three and a half years of each other with my brother tagging along eight years after me. I seem to have a pretty good grasp on the geography of train locations not in the same car, so I can about imagine why the two views of the trip don't coincide...
I didn't realize just how much she disliked the train option... but May 3, when she turned 86, she asked my brother to fix and return the truck to me as her only birthday present.
So Tuesday he worked with the mechanic to get the kinks ironed out, and plans to set out Thursday-ish when he's wrapped up his current projects. When he arrives, I have to get him to an airport (either KC or DM, whichever has the connections needed to fly home. Yeah... I know. It will be KC, and the timing will turn out to be when the two W's are due here. After all, this place IS named Pandemonium...)
I'm hoping he'll be able to sleep overnight at least -- that 19 or so hour drive is not easy alone.