Utah company exec has ND connection 8-07

BISMARCK, N.D.(AP) – The man whose company is part owner of the Utah mine where six miners were buried 1,500 feet down has had mining experience in North Dakota.

Bob Murray was president of the North American Coal Corporation’s Western Division and four subsidiaries in North Dakota from 1974 to 1983. In biographical notes on the Web site, www.ohiovalleycoal.com, Murray said North American told him one day in 1987 that it was his last day there, after he had spent 31 years with the company. He gave no reason but said that while leaving North American was difficult, it was the “nudge” he needed to go on and start his own company.

Dallas Wolf, a former North Dakota coal miner who worked at North American’s Indian Head Mine at Zap, recalled that when working with Murray, it was “his way or the highway.”

Murray, 67, who has said he considers himself a simple miner, now chairs the nation’s 12th-largest coal company, Murray Energy Corp. of Cleveland. It is part owner of the Crandall Canyon mine, where six workers were buried in a cave-in early Monday.

Information from: Bismarck Tribune, http://www.bismarcktribune.com