Explosion rocks refinery community once again




Posted on April 2, 2010 at 6:09 PM

ANACORTES, Wash. - Dyna Fry heard the explosion as she prepared for her family’s Easter dinner last night. It didn’t take long for her to realize what had happened.

"I thought, 'oh, those poor people waiting to see who survived and who died.' It’s just an awful thing," she said.

Dyna’s husband of 24 years was one of six men who died in the Thanksgiving Equilon Refinery explosion 11-1/2 years ago. Woody Fry left behind his wife and seven children.

Woody's son Dan remembers the saying the guys at the refinery had about its inherent dangers.

"It ain’t if, it’s when" said the youngest of the Fry children. "Dad would say that something will happen whether it’s him or somebody else."

Just over the hill from the family home is the cemetery where Woody Fry rests – in the shadow of the refinery where he died.

"There’s not one day, or even 12 hours that go by that I don’t think about him," said Dan Fry as he polishes his father's tombstone.

Fry says his hometown has a love-hate relationship with the refineries. They put food on family tables, but it can come at a terrible cost.

"My father took care of us through that refinery but at the same time the consequences can be massive," he said.

It’s all part of life as an Anacortes refinery family – bonds forged in oil and blood.

"God bless those families tonight," said Dyna, hugging her son. "It’s gonna be a long haul for them, and it's terrible."