Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

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April 19, 2013

Local mom awaited word about son – West public works director


After hearing about the explosion at West Fertilizer Wednesday night, Mineral Wells resident Sharlet Evans awaited word on her oldest son, C.J. Gillaspie, who serves as public works director for the town of West.

When she repeatedly tried to reach her son’s cell phone, the call went straight to voice mail.

It was almost noon Thursday, before she heard that her son, his wife, Miranda, and their children were all right.

“I spent most of the night watching the TV, looking for his face in the crowds,” she said. “The hotline phone numbers were useless. They were a constant busy signal. Cell phones were going straight to voicemail or a recording.

“Wanting to jump in the car and drive straight there was our first thought,” Evans added. “The second, [was] knowing it would be useless and add to the already chaotic situation. So we waited.”

Evans said her son’s home, a couple of blocks from West Fertilizer, was severely damaged by the blast.

“[Their] home was in the blast path,” she told the Index. She added that their roof collapsed in and windows were shattered.

She informed her Facebook friends that they are all OK and wrote,

“No other information for now. Thank you all for your prayers. Can’t tell you how much it means.”

“We are now waiting to hear what all they need,” she said Thursday. “Obviously everything.”

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