Skip to comments.Heat May Have Killed Second Farm Worker
Posted on 07/26/2005 7:53:36 PM PDT by Libloather
Heat May Have Killed Second Farm Worker
UPDATED: 11:10 am EDT July 26, 2005
ROXBORO, N.C. -- A migrant farm worker who was found dead near a Person County soybean field died of heart attack or heat stroke, the county sheriff said Tuesday.
Pablo Ordaz was working at the Walker Farm, a tobacco and grain farm in Olive Hill, on Tuesday when he said he wanted to quit for the day because he didn't feel well, Person County Sheriff Dennis Oakley said.
Ordaz left the farm and was last seen walking toward a mobile home at the farm. He never returned to the home he shared with other workers.
The state medical examiner's office said Ordaz had an enlarged heart valve "that could have been a contributing factor to a heart attack or a heat stroke," Oakley said. The other workers at the farm didn't suffer from heat and were given frequent breaks and water by the farmer, he said.
Also last week, the death of a migrant farmworker in Harnett County was blamed on high temperatures.
The North Carolina Labor Department said Rito Mesa Castillo, 56, collapsed last Monday while picking tobacco in Harnett County as temperatures reached 94 degrees.
"All signs point to the fact that it was heat stroke," said Regina Luginbuhl, head of the Labor Department's agricultural safety and health bureau.
Heat Claims Life Of Tobacco Worker
UPDATED: 5:25 pm EDT July 23, 2005
NBC 17 has received word of North Carolina's first heat-related death.
The North Carolina Labor Department is investigating the death of Rito Mesa Castillo. The 56-year-old collapsed while picking tobacco in Harnett County on Monday. Authorities said all signs show that Castillo died from heat stroke.
Health officials are warning people who spend anytime outside to take precautions.
This is the 15th straight day where temperatures have been above 90 degrees.
Doctors want to remind people to keep lots of water with them and drink plenty of it if you are spending a lot of time outside.
They have been called "migrant workers" since the depression (at least), when whites were competing for jobs against the Mexicans during the depression.
Are all migrant workers illegal these days? My folks were migrant laborers for a while, and they weren't illegal--5th generation as a matter of fact. Just really poor after their folks went broke during the depression.
He could very well be illegal, in fact probably is (Vegas betting odds). But, don't make the assumption that all migrants are illegals. It ain't so.
Did I miss where in the article it said he was illegal?
Here's a fairly decent list of euphemisms for illegals:
You know, see tagline, I'm not for the illegals, but if the guy was actually working on a farm, I guess that made him a farm-worker.
Not trying to be argumentative. And I'm pretty sure this fellow would have keeled over no matter what. As we all will, sooner or later.
Thanks for saving me the trouble of pointing that out. Too many here either have forgotten that, or never learned it. My parents and two oldest brother shared a tent for a couple of months, thanks to the Depression.
I'm not Hispanic, and I am totally anti illegal immigration, but Reality trumps politics. There are enough stories concerning illegals to not try attributing illegal status to every farmworker or Hispanic mentioned in the news.
Two of my older brothers spent some of their summer vacations picking fruit and knocking almonds in the 1950s. I spent some of my own summer vacations & fall weekends picking strawberries and knocking walnuts in the 1960s. It was work & money each of was greatfull to have.
I can attest that it is hot, hard, dirty work, and not something to aspire to as a 'career', but it is also honest work when performed by honest people, for honest employers.
My grandparents lost their farms in the Depression, and so they did what they knew--farm work--but they had to go to where the work was, including the kids (my parents' generation). Fortunately, all that was over by the time I was born. But, sometimes, when it's very hot and I'm out toiling in the garden for pleasure and picking veggies, etc., I think how it must have been to do that for a living on someone else's land. They used to tell me how they had worked even harder on their own land, but it didn't seem as hard because it was theirs and not someone else's.
There are millions of stories like yours, and every one of them from a citizen, something too many seem to forget.
Blessedly, I was born at the end of the war, and after my parents...who also lost everything in the Depression as a fairly newly married couple...were back on their feet.
My father was heavy construction...another 'migrant' occupation; one much too often confused with "Okies", "Rednecks", and "Trailer Trash".
migrant procurement specialist aka shop lifter
Legals migrating from California is one thing
Illegally invading from Mexico is quite another
It's too bad salt has been demonized.
Several years ago, I avoided salt like the plague. I tried to donate blood one time, and my BP was too low. Someone recommended that I up my salt intake, and I haven't had a low or high blood pressure problem since.
"It's easier for most Latin guys and it's easier for most minority people because most of us come from heat,". "You don't find too many brothers in New Hampshire and Maine and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. ... We were brought over here for the heat, right? Isn't that history? Weren't we brought over because we could take the heat?"
I plan on living forever.
So far, so good.
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