Thursday, June 29, 2017

An out of control locomotive was responsible for the death of miner Marius "Slick" Shepherd, 32, while working underground at the Oak Grove Coal Mine in Alabama

HUEYTOWN, Ala. (WBMA) — An out of control locomotive was responsible for the death of a miner at a west Jefferson County coal mine earlier this month, according to a preliminary report filed by (MSHA) Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Marius Shepherd, 32, of Jasper, was killed on June 19th while working underground at the Oak Grove Mine. A report filed by investigators on Friday states Shepherd was killed from a head injury he suffered after he either jumped or was thrown from a mine rail that had lost control. Shepherd was taken to UAB Hospital where he was pronounced dead hours after the accident.

The driver of the underground train suffered less serious injuries. The findings of the report are subject to possible change. An investigation into the incident by MSHA and the Alabama Department of Labor is ongoing.

HUEYTOWN, Ala. — Seneca Coal Resources confirms a worker died in an accident Monday afternoon.

Marius Y. Shepherd, of Jasper, was killed in a rail haulage accident at the Oak Grove Mine outside Hueytown around 6:30 p.m. Federal Mine Safety and Health Administration and the Alabama Department of Labor are investigating the incident at this time.

Seneca Coal says in a statement that they are cooperating with all federal and state investigators.

ABC 33/40 will update this story as more information is made available.


Jasper man dies in coal mining accident
Posted Wednesday, June 21, 2017

By NICOLE SMITH, Daily Mountain Eagle

A Jasper man died Monday in an accident at a coal mine in Jefferson County.

The Jefferson County Coroner’s Office confirmed that Marius “Slick” Shepherd, 32, was pronounced dead at an area hospital after a rail hauling accident at Oak Grove Mine in Hueytown at 6:30 p.m. Monday. The mine is owned by West Virginia company Seneca Coal Resources.

Shepherd lived in Jasper with his wife, Alison, and their two children, Brooklyn and Madalyn. He was a native of Parrish and a graduate of Parrish High School.

Alison Shepherd said Tuesday she is thankful for the outpouring of support from the community and is “numb” from the tragic loss of her husband.

“My wonderful husband believed in the Lord. He had a strong relationship with God. I know he's watching over us now. We have the best guardian angel I could ever have,” she said in a post on Facebook. “Everyone please hold your babies and spouses extra close tonight, because tomorrow is definitely not promised. Please continue to keep our family in your prayers. Especially our girls. They adore their daddy so much.”

Bubba Cagle, a Parrish City Council member and lifelong friend of Shepherd’s, said his friend was a good man and a friend to all.

“Slick was as good as they come, a friend for the ages, a brother, a classmate, a teammate, someone you could tell anything,” Cagle said. “Life doesn't give many lifelong friends, but I was lucky to have had Slick. Not many grown men will tell each other, 'I love you, man,' upon departure or hanging up the phone as we did, but we were family and always will be."

Oakman Mayor Cory Franks, Shepherd’s first cousin, said their family is heartbroken.

“We’re still in shock. It’s just unexpected. ... Slick was a family man. He worked hard to provide for his wife and kids. He had so many friends, and he was the type of person that would help anybody that he could help,” Franks said. “He loved working in the coal mines. Our grandfather worked in the coal mines, and our uncles worked in the coal mines. He was proud of what he did, and he enjoyed it.”

Parrish Mayor Heather Hall expressed her condolences in a post on Facebook, on behalf of the Parrish community.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and friends of Slick Shepherd. I am sure he had every intention of going home last night,” Hall said. “Hold your loved ones a little closer and remember this family in your prayers. Also please keep our miners in your prayers. We sometimes forget what an incredibly dangerous job these men do every day. God Bless.”

The accident at Oak Grove Mine is being investigated by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration and the Alabama Department of Labor.

At press time, funeral arrangements had not been announced.