Thumbs down ... to the tragic fact that the nation recorded 35 miners (in various industries) killed during 2012. Of that 35, only 19 were at coal mines, making it the second lowest number ever. However, even one miner’s death is one too many.
Thumbs up ... to federal mining regulators saying 2012 had the lowest injury and fatality rates on record. The Mine Safety and Health Administration says the number of U.S mines fell by about 120 last year, but the number of miners working was up by about 6,500.
Thumbs up ... to West Virginia being recognized for its efforts to provide healthy meals for school children. New York professor and nutrition expert Janet Poppendieck noted the state stands alone in not offering nonnutritional snacks for sale in the cafeteria.
Thumbs up ... to Beckley Common Council for approving $25,000 for Theatre West Virginia. The money will be used for production expenses at Grandview rather than travel expenses.
Thumbs up ... to the University of Charleston-Beckley for its work to promote a strong and vibrant on-campus student body. The school is offering half-price residence hall housing for up to four years at Hogan Hall.
Thumbs up ... to the Layland Miners Memorial Committee for its ongoing efforts to build a memorial in Fayette County. On March 2, 1915, there were 112 miners killed in an explosion. The three granite stones will list the men who died, as well as the names of the 53 survivors.
Thumbs up ... to The Register-Herald’s players and coaches of the year: Ron Kidd, Woodrow Wilson, Boys Coach of the Year; Jim Justice, Greenbrier East, Girls Coach of the Year; TaRon Ayers, Summers County, Boys Player of the Year; and Mackenzie Akers, Princeton, Girls Player of the Year.