CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) – A carbon workers memorial service was held Wednesday at Freedom Shelter inside the Veteran’s Memorial Park in Clarksburg.

This service was held to honor more than 250 carbon workers who have passed away. Carbon workers worked long hours, and being together so much made them feel like they were with family.

“Carbon workers are very unique because you spend more time working with your fellow worker than you do actually at home, and back to when we went to first work there, you could work 12 hours a day, 16 hours a day. You could work six days a week and seven days a week,” said Mike Blackshire, retired carbon worker. “So you were at work more waking hours than you were with your family, so that’s why there is this comradery that we feel about each other, we help one another.”

Being a carbon worker requires hard manual labor and the conditions at times we very hazardous. Albert Loar talked about how dust was so bad at these carbon plants that he had to wear a mask. It was found out later by OSHA that this dust was harmful for your health.

“When Mike and I started there, it was really dusty, houses in Anmoore had dust on them from where the wind blows it,” said Albert Loar, Retired Carbon Worker.

These workers made carbon products for steel industries, research and other industrial plants. According to Blackshire, the carbon plants in the Clarksburg area were even involved in the Manhattan Project in World War II.

Even now, twice a year, the carbon workers hold special events and have an annual picnic on the second Wednesday in June, and their Christmas party on the second Wednesday of December. Both events are held at East View Public Service District in Clarksburg.