‘Dear murderer’: With a letter a day, West Virginian tried to remind coal executive of his role in 29 deaths

'Dear murderer': With a letter a day, West Virginian tried to remind coal executive of his role in 29 deaths

He was the highest-paid and best-known person in the U.S. coal industry, but his career ended in disgrace. In May 2016, Don Blankenship, the former chief executive of Massey Energy Co., began a one-year sentence in federal prison for his role in an explosion six years earlier in West Virginia that killed 29 coal miners. To Ann Bybee-Finley, a 27-year-old West Virginia native and graduate student and activist at Cornell University, the sentence seemed trivial compared with the suffering that had occurred on his watch.

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