This nice image of Coots is from upstream online.com
When it came to managing fear, Coots Mathews knew what he was talking about. You would too if you made your living by putting out oil well fires by exploding dynamite into the shafts to starve the fire of oxygen. According to his daughter
(Mathews) … never denied fear.
“You respect the things you fear,” he would say, “and that respect can save your life.”
Coots died peacefully the other day at age 86. Perhaps those fancy cigars did him in. Here is a link to his NYT obit.