The three West Virginia friends who were rescued from a coal mine after being trapped for four days this week are now speaking out about their horrifying ordeal.
Kayla Williams, 25, Erica Treadway, 31, and Cody Beverly, 21, disappeared on Saturday. Their ATV was found near the entrance to Elk Run Coal’s Rock House Powellton mine in Clear Creek, the state Office of Miners’ Health, Safety and Training said in a statement obtained by the Associated Press.
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A fourth member of the group, 43-year-old Eddie Williams, was able to find his way out and tell authorities where his still-trapped friends were, according to ABC News.
The survivors spoke to CBS about the days they were trapped and shared that they didn’t think they would make it out alive.
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“It was the most traumatic experience of my life,” Beverly told the news outlet. “I thought that we [were going to] be found and brought out in body bags. It had been three, four, five days, we didn’t know what we [were] drinking, we didn’t know if the water was good, but that’s all we had.”
Beverly added that it was hard to breathe and they didn’t have any food.
“I never cried more in my life than I have in the past five days. I missed my family more than I missed anybody,” he said.
Treadway added to CBS News that she “couldn’t lose hope.”
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“I had three children at home, three young children, and I had two young friends who needed me,” she told CBS News.
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According to the news outlet, no charges have been filed, but police and family members believe the four went into the mine to steal cooper.
NBC News reported that the coal mine has been inactive for two years and that it’s illegal to enter.
“I’m not exploring the mines ever again and I advise nobody — nobody — to go into the mines unless you are prepared, trained and it is your job,” Treadway told CBS News.