Sunday, July 11, 2010


                                Rest In Peace Shane

Shane Roshto, an employee of Transocean, was 22 years old on the 20th of April, 2010.  He was working on board the Deepwater Horizon oil rig as a floor hand.  The youngest of the eleven explosion victims, he left behind his wife (Natalie, age 21) and son (Blaine, age 3).

We learn more about Shane, and his family, from a statement which Natalie gave to members of a federal investigation committee on the 7th of June, 2010:

In the early hours of April 21st when I received news of the explosion and fire I never thought that I would be sitting here.  I never thought that I would go home to a bright-eyed three-year-old and have to face the fact that his Daddy, my husband, would never come home to us.  Every three weeks when Blaine and I would give Shane our last loves sending him off for three weeks I always feared the helicopter ride, but never did this kind of tragedy come to mind.  Through God's grace, family and friends, Blaine and I are making it through.

After all the safety schools, meetings, fire drills and safety regulations I just knew he was safe.  When the events of the Deepwater Horizon explosion started to unfold I asked myself will I ever personally recover; what if he's out there and they just didn't look long enough?  As the days passed Shane's absence became reality.

My husband took great pride in his job, loved his work and all his Deepwater Horizon family, but most important he knew offshore work provided the life he wanted for his son.  He loved us unselfishly and provided a lifestyle that allowed me to attend college and to be home with Blaine.  During Shane's off weeks he spent time everyday with Blaine passing on his love for the outdoors, hunting and fishing and doing for others.

As the days pass I ask why?  What happened?  The life Blaine and I knew is over.  My love story came to an end.  Though he is a mirror image of his Daddy, Blaine now has a void that will never be filled.

As I sit here today, I come with a new perspective.  A perspective that I hope can make a difference - one that will ensure safety to every man in the oilfield.  I fully support offshore drilling because like Shane, many men and women depend on this as a means to provide for their families and to provide our country with a commodity that is a necessary part of everyday life.  I would like to leave here today knowing that because of the tragic death of my husband we can begin to focus on making safety the most important priority.  Not to focus on making more safety regulations, but on ways to effectively implement and use the ones already in place.  This tragedy will not be in vain if it serves to make the lives of every man and woman working in the oilfield the top priority and cause the powerful oil companies to know that they will be held accountable for their actions.  My intense interest in Shane's work led us through many conversations detailing work carried out on the Deepwater Horizon and the many safety practices that were in place.  It is my hope that these 11 men who suffered a tragic death will serve as a motive to enforce safety above all else.

I pray every day when I awake and at bedtime prayers with Blaine that I can sit him down one day and be able to tell him that his Daddy is a hero - a hero to all oilfield men and women because his death changed the heart and soul of those who place their business agenda over the importance of life.

In closing, I would like to ask that the next time you see a picture of the Deepwater Horizon in flames or hear about the oil spill that you think about this:  The flow of oil will eventually be stopped, slowly the environment will recover, the Gulf I pray will continue to provide us with oil and gas and many other things that we all enjoy, but the lives of the 11 men, their survivors and heroes of the Deepwater Horizon will forever be changed.  We can only hope that the legacy of this tragedy will be much more than a devastating oil spill, but an unfortunate tragedy that prompted changes creating a safer environment for those who love their work in the oilfields of the Gulf of Mexico.

It is believed that Shane was working in the mud pit, or nearby shaker room, when the rig exploded.  His body was not recovered.

 See, also, these pictures and brief bios of the other crew members who died in the explosion in my blog  ARCHIVE

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