Jay Wright, a 25-year-old Kentucky miner, found a jawbone belonging to a 300-million-year-old fossil shark.
This past February, when Wright was working to bolt a roof some 210 meters (700 feet) below the surface, a small rock fell from the ceiling.
When he looked up, he saw what ended up being an 18-inch piece of fossilized jawbone, with a perfect alignment of well-preserved killer teeth.
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“I could tell there was a bunch of teeth and [something] similar to a jaw. It was grayish in color with a shine — so slick,” he told ABC News.
Jay Wright, a continuous miner operator for Western County Coal, was filling in for a sick colleague at the Dotiki Mine. After a bit of wrangling he was able to dislodge to more pieces of the jaw. That area of the mine is now cordoned off.
The jaw bone belonged to a shark of the Edestus genus and it probably weighted around two tons. Better to have had an encounter with a long-gone creature in a coal mine than with a live one in the water.
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