These men trapped 700 meters underground… each with a story of what brought them there… became a family. They took on the roles as leaders, reporters, videographers, jokers, entertainers, doctors, poets and spiritual mentors. They reached deep inside themselves, sharing their talents with one another, trying hard to create normalcy in a far from normal situation. They bonded in a strength that only those in the mine will ever understand… they became brothers.
Just after midnight on the 13th of October, two months after the collapse of the San Jose Mine, the first of 33 miners resurfaced as a hero. We sat in awe, unable to remove ourselves from the television as one after another firmly placed their feet on the earth’s surface. One after another embraced the people they loved, thanked the folks who saved them… dropped to their knees or raised their arms in praise… celebrated with tears and laughter.
These men have taught us that in the face of adversity… people can rise to the occasion. We celebrate them as they’ve shown us we’re all one… with the same dreams, hopes and fears. These men and their families have shown us that faith, love and patience can change the world… one person at a time.
The world is watching you my friends. Watching this positive event in history. Together we cheer your bravery and wish you peace in the coming days. Wish you health as you find your way back into your family’s arms and pray you find acceptance for all you’ve been through. We applaud your bravery and hope it stays with you for the challenges that lie ahead. We wish your families peace… that the helplessness they felt can dull in time… that they can move forward without fear. We thank the rescuers for their tireless efforts to bring you back to the world.
Your spirit has inspired us. You have moved us. We celebrate your freedom and all you’ve shown us… humanity, peace, faith, bravery, strength and love.
Above all… love.