I am delighted to see that the miners who have been trapped in the San Esteban mine in the Atacama desert of Chile are being rescued today. It has been an amazing feat of human endurance, to withstand for 69 days in those conditions, and remain optimistic, and help each other survive. Respect and cooperation were the strategies adopted by foreman Luis Urzua, a veteran miner trapped amongst the 33 whose leadership was crucial.. Meagre resources were shared by all. I hesitate to think what their chances of survival would have been if the strongest amongst them would had monopolized resources in a selfish attempt for survival. The miners have taught us all a lesson in the value of respect and cooperation.
Many people have cooperated for this successful rescue. Jeff Hart, a driller from Denver, Colorado was taken away from drilling for water for the US army in Afghanistan to operate the T130drill that would eventually open up a hole large enough for the rescue operation to take place. Drilling for water or oil is not the same as drilling for lives, and Mr Hart, acknowledged the weight of responsibility as he expertly sensed the vibrations of the driller. Jean Romagnoli, a Chilean expert in sports medicine undertook the task of overseeing the men’s physical and psychological fitness. The families of the miners supported their loved ones sending encouraging messages through a video conferencing link. Churches throughout the world and particularly in Latin America organised prayer vigils and services.
Thank God for the combination of good leadership, professionalism, technical expertise, and prayers.