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People Top 5
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- April 17, 2006
- Vol. 65
- No. 15
No Place Like Home
Having Beaten the Medical Odds, Randal McCloy Jr.—The Sole Survivor of the Sago Mine Disaster—Picks Up His Bow and Arrow and Starts to Reconnect with His Family
Indeed. Walking, talking and lucid, McCloy—pulled from the mine near death after inhaling carbon monoxide for 41 hours—has made an "unprecedented" recovery, says neurosurgeon Julian Bailes, one of McCloy's doctors. McCloy, who needs continued rehab, has vision damage and trouble balancing and recalling names. What he hasn't forgotten: the deaths of his fellow miners, a subject he hasn't discussed publicly so far. "Things happened that I'd rather I didn't see," McCloy told Today's Matt Lauer March 30. "But I did."
By nature shy, McCloy is adjusting to his fame and is grateful for supportive letters as well as assistance from funds set up by the International Coal Group and others. His wife, Anna, 25, also just bought her husband his dream car—a new red Mustang for his 27th birthday. But as he greeted well-wishers, McCloy also savored the simple pleasures: dining on pinto beans, kicking back in his recliner and enjoying the antics of children Randal, 4, and Isabel, 17 months. "By the end of the day," says stepfather Tim Flint, "Randy was pooped."
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