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Editor’s Note: A good friend of safety

Patrick Kapust

If you’ve attended one of our OSHA’s Top 10 presentations at an NSC Safety Congress & Expo, or if you read our December issue every year, you’re familiar with Patrick Kapust, deputy director of OSHA’s Directorate of Enforcement.

A little over a week ago, we received the terrible news that Patrick had died unexpectedly. Our thoughts are with his family. We know his OSHA family is also feeling the loss very deeply.

The first time Patrick presented OSHA’s Top 10 with us, it was clear that he was nervous. But he gamely went ahead. And before long, he came to enjoy it. After each presentation ended, he’d stay around to answer specific questions from safety pros. He didn’t have to, but he was passionate about keeping people safe. So he did.

Over the years, the crowds for Top 10 grew until it became necessary to move from the Expo Floor to a ballroom. Last year, the smaller-than-expected room quickly filled to capacity. We hated the idea of turning people away. Patrick did, too. So, as soon as his presentation ended, he repeated it for the people who couldn’t get into the first one, and then stayed even longer to answer questions. Again, he didn’t have to. But he did.

Sometimes you meet someone and you immediately know they’re a good person. Patrick was a good friend to Safety+Health, and a great champion of safety. We know his work helped save lives. We hope the rest of the safety community knows it, too. He’ll be missed.

Melissa J. Ruminski The opinions expressed in “Editor’s Note” do not necessarily reflect those of the National Safety Council or affiliated local Chapters.

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