Chilean Miners Are Rescued — YEAH!! — with the help of Americans — like Jeff Hart

There must be something really compelling on the Internet for me to ignore Glee and pay attention to what’s on the computer screen instead.

But that’s what happened on Tuesday night around 8:00 PM.

After 69 days in a stinkin’ hell hole deep beneath the desert surface, the Chilean Miners were about to be rescued!

It was so suspenseful. Would the capsule fit? Would the cable hold? Would the door jam? Would the miners be all right? So riveting.

Families stood by. Nervous, smiling, sobbing. So emotional.

Rising from the bowels of a dark dank cell, the first miner popped out of the ground.

Sirens, bells, cheers, tears, jubilation! So awesome.

Watching the families hug the miners was a joy to watch. Couldn’t you just feel their relief, feel their love for each other? It was humanity at its best.

What a great night. A flawless rescue. One after another, all 33 miners came up safely in less than 24 hours.

It was a triumph of the human spirit made possible in part by the triumph of technology and engineering. The capsule that the miners were pulled up in was called the Fenix 2. It was designed by the Chilean Navy with help from NASA engineers.


The "Fenix 2" - rescue capsule for the trapped Chilean miners.

An American, Jeff Hart from Denver, drilled the hole that was bored to drop the capsule into. He had been working in Afghanistan drilling water wells when he got the call to fly to Chile. He is considered the best at this kind of work.


Jeff Hart, American drill operator, poses with the sister of one of the trapped miners at "Camp Esperanza" in Chile.

He made an interesting comment that the ‘secret’ to drilling is being able to feel the ground in your feet. A feat of the feet!

American Jeff Hart (leg sticking out) displays his unique skill in operating the T-130 drill that reached the trapped miners.

Two American companies (from Pennsylvania) also aided the rescue effort. They built and managed the hammers that pounded the ground to be able to construct the rescue hole.

Let’s hear it for American ingenuity! A job well done.

BRAVO to Chile for the incredible rescue effort. What a thrilling event! The world was uplifted by the uplifting of “los mineros de Chile.”

P.S. The only less-than-riveting part of the rescue scene on the Internet was when Chilean President Sebastián Piñera yammered away (about something or other…). That’s the only time I turned away from the computer screen to watch Glee. Rachel and Kurt sang an ‘appropriate’ duet: “Happy Days Are Here Again.”

For the people of Chile, you can say that again!


P.P.S. Wasn’t Mario Sepulveda, Miner #2, a hoot? Loved the enthusiasm. Loved the rock souvenirs. After the shell shock wears off and he’s spent enough time with the famn damily, I hope he appears on Letterman or Ellen—wearing the same sunglasses. I bet he has some great stories to tell from down under.

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