Blair Manuel - from Gonzales, Louisiana - was 56 years old on the day Deepwater Horizon exploded. He left behind his parents, three daughters and a fiancé with whom he was planning a July wedding.
A mud engineer aboard the vessel, Mr. Manuel (who worked for M-I-SWACO) was also an avid LSU fan. He had season tickets to LSU’s football games.
Manuel and five other victims were working below deck, either in the mud pit (where drilling materials were handled) or in the nearby shaker room. They were likely killed in the initial blast.
Known to his hunting buddies as "Grow Bebe" - meaning "big baby" - Blair loved being outdoors. He also loved to fish.
Blair's parents (L.D. and Geneva Manuel) have a wish - that BP will pay for a boat to take members of all eleven families to the place where their loved ones were killed. According to NPR (National Public Radio):
BP faces a lot of questions about safety, about how the rescue of the survivors was handled, but there was no bitterness in this crowd [those attending Blair's funeral]. Many people across this state [Louisiana] depend on oil and gas drilling for their daily bread. Blair Manuel's memory box was buried in a local cemetery [because his body was not recovered]. His parents would like to see another memorial. They'd like the companies involved in this explosion to bring all 11 families out on a boat to see their final resting place.
Blair's parents would also like the media to at least talk about the eleven people who died. Geneva told an NPR reporter:
It's not that I'm insensitive to animals or anything else. This is just a time where I don't want to see a dove being cleaned by Dawn liquid when my son is not there.
See, also, these pictures and brief bios of the other crew members who died in the explosion in my blog ARCHIVE