Mine Explosion

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A West Virginia man says a note from his uncle who died in a coal mine this week indicates he thought he'd be in heaven and "will see us again."

Randy Toler says his uncle tried to "set our minds at ease" that he didn't suffer. He says it was "gut-wrenching" at first seeing the note from Martin Toler. The nephew says the note from the dying man is a "priceless heirloom," which he says offered "pain and comfort."

The miner's brother says the note said he would "see them on the other side." It also reads, "It wasn't bad. I just went to sleep. I love you."

Officials haven't said how many of the 12 miners who died left notes. But several families have reported getting messages from their loved ones.

All but one of the coal workers were trapped more than 41 hours behind a curtain they used to try to block deadly carbon monoxide. The 12th victim may have died from the blast. One man survived.

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