SOMERSET, Pa. Â â€”Â In the final stage of a rescue effort that has dragged on for three days, exuberant workers pulled all nine coal miners from the chamber where they were stranded far beneath the earth's surface.
Officials have identified the freed miners, in order of rescue, as Randy Fogle, Harry B. Mayhugh, Thomas Foy, John Unger, John Phillippi, Ronald Hileman, Dennis Hall, Robert Pugh and Mark Popernack. The men were pulled out approximately every fifteen minutes.
Battered American flags were seen on the sides of some of the miners' helmets as they were pulled to safety. All the men were soaking wet. When the fourth was pulled up in the yellow, cylindrical capsule, a smile was visible on his blackened face.
All nine men were transported to hospitals, where they were to remain for 24 hours and be reunited with their families, officials said.