Girlfriend of crane collapse victim speaks out

By Melissa Correa - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) - After weeks with no work, Ronald Well landed a job with Harbor Dredge and Dock. His first day was Wednesday. Well's girlfriend tells us she never expected him to not come home.

"I just told him, have a good day. I'll see you later on tonight," said Julia Caldwell, Ronald Well's girlfriend.

Wednesday started out like any other for Julia Caldwell. She wished her boyfriend of five years luck.

Melissa Correa: "Had he worked for Harbor Dredge for a while?"

Julia Caldwell: "No. Actually that was his first day."

But at 1:30 p.m. her world came crashing down. Police called. They needed to speak with her in person.

Julia: "You always expect the worst when police call."

Melissa: "But you weren't expecting him to have died yesterday?"

Julia: "No I wasn't. I wasn't expecting that at all."

The man she expected to see at the end of the day was dead. Today Chesterfield police say Well was one of two men dismantling a crane. He incorrectly took apart some pieces which sent the boom tumbling down. The preliminary investigation lead police to believe it was an accident. On OSHA's website no previous investigations into Harbor Dredge and Dock came up. According to a statement from the company, "In over 22 years of operation, we've never experienced a death in our work family."

Julia: "He was a hard worker. He loved to play with his nieces and nephews."

Melissa: "Did you love him?"

Julia: "Oh yeah. Yeah we loved each other. We didn't say it a lot, but we did."

Melissa: "Did you tell him you loved him yesterday?

Julia: "Actually I didn't get a chance to tell him that and I really am sorry for that right now."

Julia is holding tight the few pictures she has left of the man who was to be with her 'til the end. Her somber face: a reminder to live everyday as if it's your last.

"It's just the little things that I didn't get a chance to say. It really eats at you. It's like why didn't I just say those 3 little words. I love you. See you later," said Julia.

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