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12/06/2004

Plight of Horizon Miners Continues

Wally Cooper never missed a day in the coal mines, breathing in gritty black dust, straining to carry 150-pound oak timbers through cramped tunnels until his aching body was drenched in sweat down to his socks.

It was part of the bargain he made each day he descended into the darkness. Hard work for now, security for later -- with good benefits spelled out in black and white in his union contract. Or so he thought.Seven months after Cooper suffered a massive heart attack, the mine was closed, the bankrupt company that owned it was sold and as part of the deal, his health insurance was terminated.

Now, at age 53, he's wondering how he'll pay doctor bills or buy the drugs -- an astounding 62 pills a day -- that keep him alive. (MORE>>>)

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