Oil Rig Sinks, Mississippi Man Missing

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

Officials are saying that an explosion on an oil rig off the coast of Louisiana has the potential to be a major spill.

The Coast Guard is still searching for the 11 workers missing since the blast Tuesday.

Rhonda Burkeen said her husband, 37-year-old Aaron Dale Burkeen from the Sandtown community near Philadelphia, was missing after Tuesday's rig explosion about 50 miles off the coast in the Gulf of Mexico.

Burkeen says the family was getting hourly updates from authorities, but the workers had not been found as of Thursday morning.

Rhonda Burkeen says her husband is a crane operator and a father of two.
Seventeen people were injured in the explosion, four critically.

Survivors who escaped the blast have told company officials that they fear those missing were unable to evacuate. The company has been unable to confirm those reports.

The platform burned for more than a day after a massive explosion Tuesday. It sank into the Gulf of Mexico Thursday.

Crews have been searching by air and water for the 11 workers from the Deepwater Horizon, though one relative said family members have been told it's unlikely anyone survived.

A lawsuit is claiming the companies involved in the explosion were negligent.
It was filed in New Orleans Thursday on behalf of a Mississippi man who worked on the rig and is one of 11 people still missing after the blast.

The lawsuit says Shane Roshto, of Amite County, Miss., was thrown overboard in the Tuesday night explosion and is feared dead.

The rig is owned by Transocean Ltd. and was under contract to oil giant BP. Both are defendants in the lawsuit.

A Transocean spokesman declined to comment comment and BP wouldn't discuss the suit.

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  • by anita foster Location: philadelphia,miss on Apr 23, 2010 at 03:50 PM
    Rhonda,you, your family and Dale's family are in my prayers.I pray and ask God to give you all strength during this sad time in the missing of your love one and as well as the others.May God Bless You.
  • by Teresa Location: Galax VA on Apr 23, 2010 at 11:03 AM
    Our Heart goes out to Rhonda, she is my husband's and my greatniece. I am sure (as to the comment made) that Rhonda, being under such extreme grief and sorrow, did not intentionaly mean to leave out Dale's 2 sons. She and Dale's family need all our prayers at this time, not pointing out any failed responses. We are praying for you sweetheart that God will hold you in His hand. He will help you, just lean on Him
  • by Teresa Location: philadelphia on Apr 23, 2010 at 08:28 AM
    can you post the missing mens namesabd their hometown. i would like to post it on my email for prayers for the families and also put on the prayer list at church
  • by TammyT Location: Philadelphia on Apr 22, 2010 at 09:16 PM
    We are all praying for Aaron's family: Rhonda, their 2 kids and Aaron's two sons. He is a fine man and all these kids need their daddy to come home safely. If anyone can make it through this, he will.
  • by Minnie Location: Philadelphia on Apr 22, 2010 at 09:02 PM
    I know Aaron and my prayers are with his family. However, Rhonda failed to note that he is also the father of two sons from his previous marriage. Though nearly grown, I know they are griefstricken and need comfort and support as well.
  • by love Location: unknown on Apr 22, 2010 at 02:52 PM
    to mrs. rhonda and family, our prayers goes out to u and your family. we will continue to pray for all the families involved. remember god loves u and he is in controlled. he will never forsake u. when times seem harder pray harder and know someone cares and someone knows what u are going thru, thats god.. even tho we dont know the families personal our hearts and prayers are with you all. burkeen teammate #4love
  • by Debbie Location: Meridian on Apr 22, 2010 at 09:54 AM
    I hope this ladies Prayers are answered.
  • by clark Location: sandtown on Apr 22, 2010 at 09:47 AM
    I am from Sandtown and know him personally..My heart goes out..Pray for this family and the other families involved..
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