Chilean Miner to Visit Seton Hall

Chilean Miner Mario Sepulveda, who along with 32 others survived 69 days underground following the San Jose mine collapse, will be visiting Seton Hall University on Thursday, March 24, to share his experience. Sepulveda became known around the world as “Super Mario” for his broadcasts from below the earth’s surface.

Sepulveda is the founder of Miner’s Miracle, which is collaborating with Seton Hall to aid those who were affected by last year’s Chilean earthquake, including rebuilding homes that were destroyed. Seton Hall will also make a monetary donation to help aid the mission of Miner’s Miracle which includes efforts to help the people who have been affected by the earthquake and ensuing tsunami in Japan.

Sepulveda will be accompanied by Dr. Jean-Christophe Romagnoli who played a crucial role in the miners’ health while they were trapped underground by creating a special exercise and stress management program for the trapped miners. He was also responsible for their care during the rescue process. They will be accompanied by the Consul General of Chile in New York, the Hon. Julio Fiol.

Seton Hall University Spokesman Greg Tobin said, “Seton Hall’s Center for Catholic Studies invited Senor Sepulveda to our campus to share his message of hope and servant leadership, which has long been central to the University’s mission. Our students are always seeking opportunities to serve those most in need and will certainly be inspired when they hear how for so many of the miners, their personal struggles were transformed into moments of faith and healing.”

Two Chilean miners to attend Framingham ESL fundraiser


FRAMINGHAM — Two of the 33 Chilean miners who spent 69 days trapped underground will be guests of honor in May at the MetroWest ESL Fund’s annual fundraising dinner.

Florencio Avalos Silva, the 31-year-old who was the first winched to the surface from the cavern 2,300 feet below ground, and Omar Orlando Reygada Rojas, 56, will spend the week in MetroWest, visiting schools and touring the area.

The plan to honor the famous visitors was announced last night by WCVB-TV news anchor Susan Wornick, a Natick native, during an open house at Fuller Middle School. Wornick will emcee the May 19 fundraiser at the Sheraton Framingham.

Martin I. Estner, chairman of the MetroWest ESL Fund, which provides private financing for adult English classes, said the gala’s theme is “A light in the darkness.” That theme parallels the journey of the 33 miners to freedom on the surface, he said.

“There are lots of parallels. People who do not speak English when they come to this country, the allusion they give is like being in the darkness and coming into the light,” Estner said.

“The world community came to the aid of these miners,” he said. “Our neighbors who don’t speak English – we’re a community coming to their aid,” helping fund more than two dozen free classes each semester teaching English, basic education and citizenship.

‘Son of Dracula’ Meets Chilean Miners

Anyone who wants to turn last year’s saga of the trapped Chilean miners into a movie or book will have to go through Bela G. Lugosi.

The 73-year-old attorney was hired about a month ago by the rights-holding entity created by all 33 miners. As a result, he will negotiate and draft contracts with producers, publishers and anyone else seeking to license their story or book a public appearance.

Lugosi, an attorney in the downtown L.A. office of Arent Fox LLP, knows a thing or two about Hollywood: He’s the son of the classic movie monster actor of the same name, best known for iconic roles in the 1930s as Count Dracula, and later, as a star of Ed Wood’s low-budget cult classics.

As a child, the younger Lugosi would follow his dad around movie sets such as “Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein,” but was warned away from acting. His dad thought actors were too dependent on producers and agents.

“I took my dad’s good advice and stayed out of the talent side of the business,” he said. “For one thing, I didn’t have much.”

Chilean miner celebrity set to drop in for fundraiser

Franklin Lobos reckons Brad Pitt should play him in a Hollywood adaptation of the Chilean mine rescue because of all the stars in Tinseltown, “he’s the one that looks like me the most”.
The upbeat ex-pro footballer will skydive into a fundraiser at Macedonia Park, Berkeley, on Sunday.

It will be only the latest wonder in a fortune-filled existence carved out since October last year, when Mr Lobos became the 27th man pulled from deep underground at Copiapo, Chile.

There are book and film deals in the works. He has travelled to Miami, Los Angeles, Manchester, Prague and Israel on the strength of his new-found fame.

He is in the Illawarra at the invitation of former team-mate Jorge Alarcon, of Lake Heights, whose family has organised the fundraiser football day.

Despite his starring role in the event, Australia is a welcome change of pace for Mr Lobos, who is instantly recognisable in his homeland.

Unlike many of the other 32 trapped miners, he was working in his home town when the mine disaster occurred and the world’s media crowded in to record its every development.

“Some of the guys were getting out [of hospital] dressed as doctors, dressed as police officers, but for me it was a different task – everybody knew me,” said Mr Lobos, who was nicknamed El Mortero Magico (The Magic Mortar) during his playing days with Chilean national side Regional Atacama in the 1980s and 1990s.

“In the first days I couldn’t even leave my own house and that was very hard to deal with. It was very surprising. People still see you and want to show you their love.”

However, he considers his life to have changed “only for the better” as a result of his ordeal.

It brought him closer to his wife and two daughters and was probably why he was offered a football coaching job and able to leave mining, he said.

All the miners receive a monthly wage from a company that has already sold the film rights and is contracted to look after their interests.

Funds from Sunday’s event, called Football for the People 2 and organised by the not-for-profit group Fuerza (Strength) Chile Community, will help victims of the Chilean earthquake and the Queensland floods.

Around 4000 people are expected at the event, which begins at midday and will include rides, raffles, auctions and Chilean food, music and dance. Mr Lobos will land at 12.50pm.

Chilean mine rescue capsule shown in Toronto

A police officer stands guard by the capsule that was used to lift 33 trapped miners to the surface of the San Jose mine, displayed on Oct. 19, 2010, outside the government palace in Santiago, Chile. (Jorge Sanchez/Associated Press)

Canadians who were transfixed by the rescue of 33 trapped Chilean miners now have a chance to get closer to the drama.

One of the Fenix rescue capsules built to pull the men up from 700 metres of rock at the San Jose copper and gold mine near Copiapo last October will be on display in Toronto through Wednesday.

The metal capsule is painted in Chile’s national colours of white, red and blue, with scratches marking its journey into the depths of the earth in mid-October 2010.

It made its North American debut Sunday at a convention of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada. The capsule had previously been displayed in China.

The bullet-shaped pod was something of an attention magnet, drawing a constant crowd over the weekend, including Chilean Mining Minister Laurence Golborne. He led the team responsible for the rescue and said the capsule represents the strength and unity of the Chilean people.

Many Canadians who took their picture with the capsule called it a surreal experience.

Marc Gasparotto of Thunder Bay, Ont., said seeing the pod brought him a lot closer to the harrowing rescue, and Toronto resident Dave Prince said the capsule was a good visual reminder of the risks miners face every day.

The men trapped in the San Jose mine spent 69 days underground in the wake of a cave-in on Aug. 5, before being brought to the surface.

Rescued Chilean Miners Plant Olive Trees in Israel

The world let out a collective sign of relief in October, as news came that all 33-trapped Chilean miners were pulled from the San Jose gold and copper mine safely. Since their harrowing ordeal, the group has been welcomed with open arms all over the globe, including Israel.

A delegation of 25 miners and their wives have been traveling throughout Israel since late February, underwritten by the Israeli Ministry of Tourism. One of the many activities the miners participated in, was the planting of olive tress reported The Jerusalem Post.

The olive tree has long been symbolic for peace and wisdom, poignant considering the site selection for the planting ceremony. The location chosen for the miners to plant the trees was the Dalton-Gush Halav Trail in Galilee. The recreational trail is 2500 meters in length, and connects the Jewish community of Dalton, with Gush Halav, home to both Christians and Muslims; a conflation of the three religions.

In attendance with the miners at the tree planting ceremony was Ministry of Tourism Director Noaz Bar-Nir, and KKL-JNF World Chairman, Efi Stenzler.

“The people of Israel were totally gripped, watching breathlessly throughout your struggle for life. Together with people from around the entire world, Israel’s citizens prayed for your welfare and we are now so happy to see you whole and healthy and here in Israel,” said Stenzler at the ceremony.

“Since we were rescued from the mine, we have visited many places around the world. But there’s absolutely no doubt that this is one of the most exciting places. It has filled us with a deep feeling of faith. Our lives were placed in real danger, and Israel also deals with dangers to its existence. At the most difficult moments in life, prayer is the only thing that strengthens us,” stated Luis Urzua, the last miner to be rescued from the bowels of the Earth.

PM Netanyahu’s Remarks at his Meeting with the Chilean Miners


Independent Media – Following are Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s remarks to the Chilean miners:

“You told me about your visit to the Dead Sea. They say that it is the
lowest place in the world but that is not exactly true. You were in the
lowest place in the world. The entire world watched you and expected that
you would be saved. It almost did not happen. I remember several similar
events in my life when the whole world watched and wanted to see people be
saved and succeed in returning.

The first time was when man first set foot on the moon. All humanity
watched and wanted to see the astronauts return safely. The second time was
at Entebbe, during the operation to free the hostages and bring them back
home. The third time was 9/11, when the whole world watched to see if it
was possible to rescue people from the burning and collapsing towers. The
fourth time was with you; the whole world watched.

Now, what gave you the strength? Tell me, what gave you the strength.
Faith. Faith in life, in God and in life. Our country and our people have
more than a few enemies. They say that they sanctify death – but you know,
and everyone knows, that Jews sanctify life.

You also sanctified life and the strength of faith in God, for life, was
stronger than death. And this is what we have in common. In the Galilee,
in Tiberias, in Jerusalem, we sanctify life. We were very moved when you
came to this place, where that faith began, in this city, Jerusalem. We all
aspire to life, to live in peace, to live with faith and to live amidst
mutual respect.

Welcome to Jerusalem.

I was very impressed by the efforts of your President, with whom I spoke
several times, and by his focus, by his intent and by his bringing help from
overseas, from everywhere in the world, in order to help rescue you from the
depths of the earth. And of course, I was impressed by your strength and
your faith. We understand that completely here, believe me. They say that
the Jewish People live against all probabilities; the Jewish People has
succeeded in overcoming all the rules of history. You succeeded – against
all odds and all assessments – in emerging forth.

We hold you in the highest regard. We are very moved and are happy to see
baby Richard. We invite him to return when he reaches bar mitzvah age – 13.

Thank you very much.”

Israel’s Peres hosts rescued Chilean miners

Jerusalem – Israeli President Shimon Peres hosted a reception for the Chilean miners who were trapped underground for more than two months last year.

Some 25 of the 33 men who were trapped for 69 days in the San Jose mine in the Atacama region are on an eight-day pilgrimage to the Holy Land.

Peres opened the ceremony with a Jewish prayer traditionally cited after surviving danger, and said the men’s rescue had been a ‘tremendous display of solidarity and love.’

He said they had impressed the world with their ‘determination and willpower.’ ‘I am proud to host you here,’ he added.

The group arrived in Israel on Wednesday, with a minder Jose Enriquez, who told reporters, ‘It’s a blessing to be here, in the place of origin of God, to whom we prayed so much while being inside the mine.’

Mario Gomez, 63, one of the oldest of the group of 33, said their faith had kept them together and alive in the mine.

The miners have a packed itinerary, with visits to Jerusalem’s holy sites, including the Via Dolorosa and the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, believed to have been built on the site of Jesus’ crucifixion, on Thursday. Over the weekend, they travelled to the Palestinian city of Bethlehem, on the southern West Bank, and toured the Church of Nativity, believed to mark the spot were Jesus was born.

Northern Israel, with Nazareth and a Baptism ceremony at the Jordan River, are scheduled for Monday.

A ceremony at Jerusalem’s Western or Wailing Wall, a key Jewish holy site, where they were invited by the monument’s rabbi to place notes of prayer between its ancient stones, was also a highlight.

The men’s copper mine below the Atacama desert collapsed on August 5. They were found alive 17 days later, but it was not until October 13 that the first miner, Florencio Avalos, was rescued.

Chilean Miners Baptized In Jordan River





After they survived underground for 69 days, they emerged to say they felt reborn.
But now 25 of the 33 Chilean miners, who made headlines around the world after their amazing rescue from a collapsed mine last October, have come closer to rebirth after being baptised in Israel.
The men, dressed in white robes, underwent the religious ceremony at the Yardenit site in the country’s River Jordan near the sea of Galilee – where, according to Christian belief, Jesus was also baptised.
It was just one of the highlights of their week-long trip to Israel, which they describe as a ‘pilgrimage of Thanksgiving’.
During their visit, the miners – many of whom are accompanied by their wives and children – have had the chance to visit key Catholic sites in the Holy Land, including the Via Dolorosa and Bethlehem’s Church Of The Nativity in the occupied West Bank.
But the group also found some time to relax at the Dead Sea, where they floated in the water and took advantage of the mineral-rich mud around the area, which is the lowest place on Earth.
They have also had a chance to visit Jerusalem’s Western Wall and the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum during the trip, which is being sponsored by the Israeli Tourism Ministry.
The miners have become celebrities after their gruelling ordeal trapped underground and subsequent rescue.
A large contingent have been guests of honour at both Manchester United and Real Madrid matches. One appeared at the National Television Awards, while others visited Disneyworld and Hollywood.There is also talk of a film.
However there is a darker side to their new-found status, with many of the miners suffering post-traumatic stress disorder after they emerged from the mine.
Doctors say all but one of the 33 miners have experienced severe psychological issues since the ordeal.
Some have described debilitating anxiety since surfacing four months ago. One requires a daily dose of six tablets in order to be able to hold a conversation, and so this day lives in fear of small spaces and even the slightest sound.
Others struggled to rebuild the relationships they once had with friends and family members. One man is reported to be constructing a wall around his home.
The men revealed the full extent of their ordeal – which occurred after the diamond and copper mine they were working in collapsed – in a recent interview with the U.S show 60 Minutes.
Several admitted that both suicide and even cannibalism were considered as the miners struggled to contend with the idea that they may never be freed.
One of the men, 31-year-old Victor Zamora – who is among the miners on the trip – said on the show: ‘I said to a friend, “Well, if we are going to continue suffering, it would be better for us to all go to the refuge, start an engine and with the carbon monoxide, just let ourselves go.”
‘I think all of us felt that way. At that moment it wasn’t really committing suicide, it was not to continue suffering. We were going to die anyway.’
He added, ‘Before I went in, I was a happy guy. Being trapped, watching my friends around me die, rocks falling…the other me is still in there.’

William Morris Signs The Chilean Miners

WME has added 33 new clients. They are the Chilean miners who were rescued last October after being trapped together for 69 days after the copper mine they were working in collapsed August 5, 2010 in Copiapo. The men were stuck 2000 feet underground, and were finally rescued one at a time. The miners continue to be an inspiring story of survival, though reports indicate many are still having trouble processing the ordeal [Ed. note: best sentence in this news report about them getting Hollywood agents? Dopest detail? #swag].

WME will rep life rights in all areas, including TV, film, books, commercials, theater and lectures. WME has the ability to sell a rights package that will include a daily journal kept by one of the miners. They haven’t aligned with anyone until now. WME will work with Arent Fox, the law firm working with the group, as well as Chilean firms Carey y Cia and Remberto Valdes.