- Posted October 7, 2013 by
Virgin Islands (USA)
Three of my frineds drifted at sea for 10 hours
October 5 near Miami, FL.
Ok - Since the laptop belonging to Glen Watkins is now at the bottom of the ocean, here is - in a nutshell and possibly not completely accurate - what happened.
Sat night (Sept 28) Matthew Spencer, Jaime Santos and Glen Watkins were sailing back (26 foot boat belonging to Matt) to St Croix from St. John. After sunset, the boat started taking on water and within 30 seconds the boat capsized (upside down). They were not able to grab anything (except Glens surfboard). They sat on the partially submerged boat - fortunately - three life jackets popped up. After sitting partially in the water, on the bottom of the boat, for 10 hours at night - at 3:30 am a cruise ship passed them 150 feet away. Despite their calls, it passed them. An hour later it returned - four cabins had reported the hollers and one reported seeing them in the water. It sounds like it took awhile for them to spot them - but Glen credits his yellow surfboard to finally catching the spot light. The cruise ship fed and clothed them. The ship continued its route to Sint Maarten. They were detained on the ship until we could gather up digital images of their documents (passports, etc). They then were stuck on Sint Maarten for a few days because USA Homeland Security did not seem to grasp that their documents were at the bottom of the ocean. Thanks to many people including the team from the office of Donna Christensen - they were finally able to get back to St Croix on Oct 2.
The boat was found, smashed up on Great St James island. A honest person found Matt's wallet and called him. Amazing.
Rumor is that their life jackets will soon hand at the Wine Bar at Comanche.
Special thanks to
- the Captain and crew of Royal Caribbean Jewel of the Seas
- the guests were were awake at 3:30 am!!!
- Leroy Brooks of the Sint Maarten government
- Michael Petievich for constant calls, arrangements and more
- Stevie Spencer for coordinating, informing and keeping everyone calm
- Trini at Bottom's Up in Sint Maarten
- Pasang Grahn hotel in Sint Maarten
- Austin for having all the docs
- the team of Donna Christensen
- Ms. Chang
- and so many more who helped, celebrated and welcomed them back to dry land.