Randal McCloy, Jr. has been in my thoughts and prayers numerous times each day over the last couple of weeks. I’m sure many of you would say the same thing.
McCloy, the lone survivor of the Sago mine disaster which claimed the lives of 12 of his co-workers, remains in critical but stable condition at West Virginia University Hospital. Doctors report that Mr. McCloy’s overall condition remains essentially unchanged. He is still in a coma.
I am praying for Randal’s full recovery for several reasons.
First of all, Randal’s wife, Anna, and their two children, 4-year-old Randal III and 1-year-old Isabel, need their husband and daddy back.
Secondly, Randal, if he fully recovers from this coma and has recollection of the hours and events after that January 2nd explosion, can give the 12 grieving families much more information than came from the scribbled notes a few of them were fortunate enough to recover from their lost loved ones. He can provide details of what those men experienced and said in those final hours.
Finally, from what I’ve read and heard, there were at least three men in that hole that had a personal relationship with Jesus. I’m praying that if Randal recovers, he’ll have some amazing stories to share about what those three men did, said and shared with the other nine in those final hours.
Jackie Weaver was a 52-year-old electrician who had spent 26 years working in the mines. Weaver always wrote "Jesus saves" in the coal dust of his mine car as he and colleagues descended into the mine, said his cousin, Scotty Felton.
"He had time to talk to them about meeting their Savior," said Felton.
Jerry Groves tried to get out of the coal mines. He applied for a job with a road crew, got his commercial license and learned to drive a truck.
"But the Lord wouldn't let him out," said his friend, Alfred Clay.
Unable to find work elsewhere, Groves stayed on the job in the mine. That's where he was when the explosion erupted. Clay believes that's just where God wanted his white-bearded friend, ready to help save the souls of his fellow miners.
"I hope and pray he was witnessing to that group," Clay said.
Jim Bennett was eulogized as a man of fiery Christian faith. The 61-year-old man who operated the mine's shuttle car wrote a note while trapped indicating he was still lucid 10 hours after the blast, his daughter has said.
"Jimmy Bennett was probably the closest one to me," said co-worker Matt Brown. "He was a Christian man. He would pray for people when they went in the mines, when they'd go in every day. He'd pray when he had his time off at lunchtime. He'd get off by himself."
"I'm as sure as I'm standing here today, I believe that down in the pits of that Sago Mine, there was one fella, not tall in stature perhaps, but was telling the boys, `You better get ready. We're going to meet Jesus,'" the Rev. Dennis Estes said.
We may never know this side of heaven what happened in that mine in those final hours but here’s praying, hoping and wishing that we do find out………from a completely healthy Randal McCloy, Jr. who stands before a sea of microphones and tells the world how God was glorified and Jesus was shared.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." - John 3:16
Brent High, Founding Partner
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