A Coal Miner's Note

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Thursday night was a very difficult interview but also, in a odd way, an inspiring one for me. I interviewed the nephew of a miner who died below and left a note for his family. The nephew provided us a copy of the note. Click on the thumbnail image of the note in the photo box above to read the note.

The note read, in part, "It isn't bad... just falling asleep." In other words, in his time of huge distress, as he lay dying 260 plus feet below the surface of the earth, he thought of his family. He wanted them to know he was not suffering. Only a giant of a man would in his last moments think of others. I wish I had known this miner. I probably could have learned a lot of things from him.

As promised, let me give you a bit of the behind the scenes of the show: Yesterday Bernie Grimm and Ted Williams took me out to lunch. We had been trying to schedule the lunch for some time. As you might imagine, we have become good friends over the years. Unfortunately at night we never really get to talk since they arrive about half hour before the show and we are all busy preparing for the show. We get to talk during commercial breaks but that reduces our conversations to essentially a soundbite since the breaks are short. Yesterday was had time to talk and laugh.

If you are an animal lover, you must read posted e-mails No. 6 and 7 for certain. There is also a special picture that goes with the two e-mails. Click on the thumbnail image of the cat in the photo box above to check it out!

Now for the e-mails:

E-mail No. 1

I suppose in your profession you have seen the very worst and the very best in people. The note from the miner was one of the simplest yet most poignant words I have every read. The guy who wrote that probably lived an honest life with dignity, and he died with dignity.
All the best,

ANSWER: I admire this miner beyond words. In his death he wanted to make sure everyone felt OK. I wish I had known him.

E-mail No. 2

I hope the family members of the coal miner who wrote the letter feel some comfort in knowing their love one did not suffer, and he was thinking about them up to the last. I think the letter tells a lot about what was going through the coal miners’ minds (conveyed through his letter) as they knew that they were not going to make it out of alive, and it also tells a lot about their faith and their beliefs. He mentioned his love for his wife and seeing his family members again in the afterlife. I am not a religious person, but his letter made me stop and think about my own personal beliefs in the afterlife. I thank his family for allowing you to share his letter with your viewers. My prayers and thoughts are with them.
Did he write the letter with a piece of coal?

E-mail No. 3

I just saw your story about the miner that left a message to his wife and family. I know that this is a very sad and tragic time for these families, but how fortunate are the families that they did receive a message from their loved ones? So many people pass away unexpectedly and do not get the opportunity to say, "I love you and I am in no pain!" God bless these families and I pray they find peace soon.
Thanks Greta for all you do!
Sheri J.
Chickamauga, GA

E-mail No. 4

Dear Greta,
It is somehow unbelievable that Mrs. Smith passed out from having too much to drink and her new husband did not look after her. Could someone have slipped something in her drink to get her out the way while they went after Mr. Smith? If not, that's about the strangest honeymoon I have ever heard.
Tami Cutlip
Hahira, GA

E-mail No. 5

Regarding Royal Caribbean's comments on CCTV tapes: I work in the security industry and the REAL STANDARD is to keep CCTV footage for 30 days, not 6 hours! In addition, not having people monitoring the CCTV cameras is a HUGE no-no in the security industry. It is also a major liability for any facility that has cameras that are not monitored. The reason is because when the public observes cameras they assume somebody is monitoring them, they feel safer. For example a women that works at night may chose to park in a garage that has cameras, assuming somebody is monitoring them.
Boston, MA

E-mail No. 6 — As many of you know, I read and answer many e-mails each day. Some e-mails really catch my attention and recently I received one in which the writer mentioned his cat, Stir Fry. I love animals and thought the name "Stir Fry" an unusual one for a cat. I asked the writer to please send me a picture of Stir Fry. Click on the thumbnail image in the photo box above:

Here is a pic of the idiot per your request. As you can plainly see he is not very happy about being woken up to take this pic, it annoyed him, which gives me great joy.
From the desk of Smitty, Anna Marie and Stir Fry, the idiot cat. Ride safe.

E-mail No. 7 — And, to further my good fortune, I also got an e-mail from Stir Fry himself!

Dear Greta,
Now that my human has left to go do whatever mundane tasks it is he does every day (it must involve dogs *shudder* because he usually comes home all grouchy) I can take the time to properly thank you for recognizing the greatness that is me. I am humbled at the fact that you will be posting the picture "Mr. Opposing thumbs" took of me on your Web blog, fully well knowing you will be inundated with e-mails all hailing the omnipotent me. Unfortunately "Mr. I Control the Fancy Feast and Chocolate Milk" still does not recognize my greatness, why he won't even let me sleep on his bed just because I like to go outside a lot and roll around on dead things and whatnot. I'm a cat for crying out loud, it's what we do. Besides, it is obvious to me I'm not the only one around here likes to roll around on disgusting things, trust me I've seen his ex-wife. Anyway, once again thank you, I certainly hope your servers will be able to handle all of the e-mails you be receiving on my account.
Yours cordially,
Stir Fry
From the desk of Smitty, Anna Marie and Stir Fry, the idiot cat. Ride safe.

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