April 29, 2007

Henry Russell's Last Words Now a Country Song

Henry Russell was trapped in a West Virginia coal mine with more than 100 others when he began writing loving last messages to his family with pieces of coal on scraps of paper torn from bags of cement before shutting the scraps in his lunch box before he lay to die.

Diana Jones, the American country singer who recorded her song about Henry Russell to raise money for a permanent memorial at the site of the mine disaster in Everertville paid him credit,

I didn't add much," she said. "A lot of it is verbatim... I just feel so honoured to give his words a form that will live on."

Henry Russell's last words
Still alive but air is getting bad. Oh how I love you, Mary.

Dear father, I will be going soon. We are just cold and when the air comes it will be bad as we are on the return side. Will meet you all in heaven. We are going to heaven. We have plenty of time to make peace with the Lord. H Russell

I will soon be going to leave this world. Stay in America and give kids a home and marry again if you have a notion but God bless you and the kids. HR

Dear Mary, tell father I was saved. Also the Erskines. We don't feel any pain. Try and stay in the USA. Love to the kids. H Russell.

You can listen to the song here.

Posted by Jill Fallon at April 29, 2007 8:22 AM | TrackBack | Permalink