Please join me in praying for the souls of the men who died yesterday afternoon at the LyondellBasell refinery in Houston where Herb works. He was at home when the accident occurred. A crane, one of the largest in the world, collapsed. Owned and operated by Deep South, it was on-site in preparation for LyondellBasell's turnaround on a coker unit. Coke, the product of this unit, is used for fuel in some power plants and other fuel-burning processes. Black mountains of coke can be seen along the shores of the Houston ship channel waiting to be transported by ship.
In the midst of tragedy there are still things for which I am thankful. I am thankful that an alarm sounded when the crane got into trouble, allowing most people to get out of the way. I am thankful that the crane did not fall in the opposite direction onto the coker unit where approximately 1,700 people were working. I am thankful for the new appreciation I have for the crane operators. In my ignorance, I never considered them when Herb tried to communicate to me the awesomeness of the crane. He told me that it took more than 250 flatbed 18-wheelers to deliver it to the site. He had wanted to take me to see it after Mass last Sunday, but I wanted to take a nap instead. I wish now I had gone.
Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord.
And may perpetual light shine upon them.
May the souls of all the faithful departed
Through the mercy of God rest in peace.