Fourth TECO worker dies from industrial accident

- A fourth worker died over the weekend from his injuries sustained in an industrial accident at a TECO power plant on June 29.

Frank Jones, 55, passed away Saturday at Tampa General Hospital, where'd been fighting for his life since  the accident.

His family, including his wife Tracy Jones, and friends gathered Sunday evening for a vigil in his  honor.

"Frank touched a lot, a lot of people. He helped out a lot of people as well. He was just hard  working," Tracy Jones told FOX 13. "It's hard but I just got to take it one day at a time."

Frank Jones was among the six Tampa Electric workers who were either killed or injured in the  accident at the Big Bend Power Plant. They were using a water-blaster to try to unclog a tank  containing molten stone waste called "slag," which started spewing out onto the workers.

Two men died at the scene. A third died in the hospital last week.

Frank Jones and his stepson, Gary Marine, Jr., were both severely burned. Marine remains in the  hospital, struggling to survive.

"I hate that day. I wish I can go back and beg him to stay home, but if I know Frank he would have  got up and went to work anyway. He loved work," Tracy Jones said. "Do I think he died doing something  he loved? Of course. But it doesn't make it any better. Tha's not going to bring him back. I wish I  could have him back. I miss him."

Tracy and Frank Jones were childhood sweethearts, meeting and dating in their early teens. After more  than 20 years apart, life brought them back together and they married a year and a half ago.

Frank Jones had worked for Gaffin Industrial, a contractor for TECO, for 27 years. Marine, Tracy's  son, had recently joined him there. She said the two were finishing their shift when something went  wrong.

"Right before he got off he called me and said, 'baby, I'm on my way home,'" Tracy recalled. "The  next thing I heard was about some big blast and I said 'no, not my husband. Not my son.'"

Tracy said she's trying to start the healing process, but can't until she hears from her late  husband's employer.

"I need someone to tell me they're sorry," she said. "I want you to come to my home, I want you to  knock on my door and I want you to tell me you're sorry, not only for my husband but also for my  son."

Following Frank Jones' death, TECO CEO Gordon Gillette released a video statement to families of the  victims.

"May they rest in peace and please know that all of Tampa Electric Company grieves with you," Gillete  said.

A sixth worker involved in the accident is also recovering in the hospital.
 

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