There's a promising future for coal on the horizon; however, safety must always be front and center in the mining business. The terrible accident at Sago Mine forces us to review the safety standards and regulations at each mine. 
    Safety takes the partnership of labor, the partnership of industry, and the partnership of government to bring their full weight and intelligence to make a difference in mine health and safety. It's important that all stakeholders work together. Today's mining industry has a high safety record, yet the Sago Mine accident only re-enforces the need to practice safety first, safety last, safety always. One death in the mining industry is too many. Let's join together to make the coal industry the safest occupation in the country. 
    Coal miners are a family, they look after each other, and watch over each others families. Our prayers are for all those individuals the Sago Mine accident touched. 


The following poem is dedicated to the men who lost their lives at the Sago Mine.


There's a comforting thought at the close of the day,
When I'm weary and lonely and sad,
That sort of grips hold of my crusty old heart
And bids it be merry and glad.
It gets in my soul and it drives out the blues,
And finely thrills through and through.
It is just a sweet memory that chants the refrain:
"I'm glad I touch shoulders with you!"

Did you know you were brave, did you know you were strong?
Did you know there was one leaning hard?
Did you know that I waited and listened and prayed,
And was cheered by your simplest word?
Did you know that I longed for that smile on your face,
For the sound of your voice ringing true?
Did you know I grew stronger and better because
I had merely touched shoulders with you?

I am glad that I live, that I battle and strive
For the place that I know I must fill;
I am thankful for sorrows, I'll meet with a grin
What fortune may send, good or ill.
But I know I shall always be true,
For I have in my life that courage you gave
When once I rubbed shoulders with you.






Kevin Crutchfield


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