Town mourns 'well-liked, gentle' man killed in KMCO blast

DAISETTA, Texas (KTRK) -- "A kind, gentle and well-liked man" is how one woman is remembering James Mangum, who has been identified by the Harris County Medical Examiner's Office as the person killed during Tuesday's KMCO plant explosion in Crosby.

"He will be missed in this community. I promise you that," said Beth Johnson, a close family friend. "He was a very, very well-mannered young man."

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Several in the Crosby community say Tuesday's blast shook their homes as a massive column of smoke billowed up into the air.

Mangum, also known as Bubba, was killed and two others were injured.

The man grew up and lived in the nearby Daisetta community, about 35 minutes northeast of Crosby.

"He was always respectful and kind and opened doors for the ladies. He was just respectful...'Yes, ma'am, no ma'am,'" Johnson said.

Johnson says Bubba was well-known and liked by many in the area and he graduated from Hull-Daisetta Independent School District. She says the last time she saw him was at the local store when he said hello and gave her a hug.

"Everybody loved him," said Johnson. "He was just funny and made people laugh. He liked to dance and go fishing. Good kid."

Beth says Bubba's father passed away a few years ago and leaves behind a sister and his mother.

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