Most call us miners and we're proud to answer, "Yes." It's not a job most want to do, and many can't do it.
We saddle up every day with our belts, meters, cap lamp, self rescuer and tools. We sound like a string of mules descending into the Grand Canyon. Our days are spent mining coal deep in the mountains of Emery and Carbon counties where we call it, Home Away From Home.
Many ask, "Why do you do it?" We do it because it's in our blood and we're good at it. Most of us never leave the mines for employment. It becomes our life work. We also provide a service to our fellow man.
When you flip that light switch in the morning, turn on the coffee pot or dry your hair, you're able to do that because of the electricity our coal provides. Many, I have heard, ask "How could you work in these places?" We will never be able to explain it to you. It's not just the money. No. It's much more. It's our way of helping this world go around every day.
I do have one concern or even a prayer, that a year from now, will we still remember these nine men at Crandall Canyon? I know I will. Yes, more men have lost their lives, In my time in the mines I have lost three friends and I will never forget any of them. There were 200 men at Winter Quarters, 175 at Castle Gate, 27 at the Wilberg Mine, and many more whom have given their lives. They are, and will always be, our heros. We hope they will be yours also.