October 13, 2010

Rescue of Miners in Chile Touches Our Emotions

Courtesy: Hugo Infante/Government of Chile

The whole world watched with baited breath during the successful rescue of 33 miners trapped in Chile. As each miner was pulled from deep under the ground, the range of emotion was strong. Even for those of us who have no ties to the miners or Chile, watching the family reunions on television was very touching. The whole scene brought a lump to our throats and a few tears to our eyes.

Part of the emotion comes from fact that we probably expected a different outcome to this story. It was 17 days after the mine collapse before anyone knew there were survivors. The miners were presumed to be dead and the fact they banded together to live for 69 days underground is nothing short of amazing.

A camera lowered 2,000 feet below the surface allowed us to see the miners and watch them get in the rescue capsule. We learned their names and heard their unique stories.

During the 22 hour rescue mission, I couldn’t help but wonder if there is a way to tap into this kind of emotion without a life or death situation. We won’t soon forget the scene of the last miner out singing the Chilean national anthem moments after his rescue. It was an emotional story…a human story. The kind of story that touches us all.

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