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post #41 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

I originally ignored this story because I've heard them before.

When I saw a picture of this guy on TV here at home, I joined the growing sector of disbelievers.

I have spent several months at sea on my own on a well found boat with adequate food and water and I lost a quarter of my body weight just from irregular eating and missing meals for whatever reason and from the mild but constant exertion of being on a boat in the seaway.

In addition I was deeply tanned from spending just a part of my time in the sun.

Either this guy weighed 400lbs when he left home and had a really good hat or this whole story is BS.

My opinion and I'm sticking to it.


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post #42 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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Originally Posted by stagman View Post
...In Harm's Way. It's the story of the USS Indianapolis, a heavy cruiser (CA-35) which amongst other things set the record for fastest sailing from SF to Pearl, was the favorite of FDR, and was ADM Spruance's flagship. She was torpedoed right at the end of the war and the Navy was so caught up in preparations for surrender that no one ever reported her overdue. of her crew of roughly 1200, 900 went into the water. After 4 days of exposure only 317 made it out.
My father in law served three years on Indy and was part of the crew that took FDR to Rio prior to Pearl Harbor. Was on USS Pensacola in the Pacific when Pearl Harbor was struck and spent over three years there...in Battle of Coral Sea/Midway/Tassafaronga Strait (torpedoed and lost several men)/Leyte Gulf/Lingayen Gulf/Okinawa. Took a hit from a kamikaze. But the only time his voice would crack and he would tear up a bit when talking about the war was when he would talk about the crew members he knew on Indy who were still aboard and were lost when she was torpedoed on her way back to Pearl.

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post #43 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

Andre, I'm not saying you should come unglued but do we know how long he spent on the island before he was shipped out ?

I too find his condition as per media pics somewhat surprising but was there time for him to fatten up ?

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Last edited by tdw; 02-04-2014 at 09:37 PM.
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post #44 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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Originally Posted by Omatako View Post
I originally ignored this story because I've heard them before.

When I saw a picture of this guy on TV here at home, I joined the growing sector of disbelievers.

I have spent several months at sea on my own on a well found boat with adequate food and water and I lost a quarter of my body weight just from irregular eating and missing meals for whatever reason and from the mild but constant exertion of being on a boat in the seaway.

In addition I was deeply tanned from spending just a part of my time in the sun.

Either this guy weighed 400lbs when he left home and had a really good hat or this whole story is BS.

My opinion and I'm sticking to it.
I agree it does seem a little far-fetched.

By coincidence, I've just finished reading "Desperate Voyage" that describes in great detail how to sail across the Pacific the hard way. Caldwell was only hours from starving to death (the "skin & bone/organ failure" type of starving to death!) and was only gradually brought back to health over several weeks by friendly natives after deliberately going ashore in Fiji.

Desperate Voyage: John Caldwell: 9780924486203: Amazon.com: Books Desperate Voyage: John Caldwell: 9780924486203: Amazon.com: Books



It's a good read. The guy was a complete idiot and admits as much.. but it's a good read and far too detailed to have been made up.

..but this OTOH.. seems a different story altogether.

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"Honestly, I don't know why seamen persist in getting wrecked in some of the outlandish places they do, when they can do it in a nice place like Fiji." -- John Caldwell, "Desperate Voyage"

Last edited by Classic30; 02-04-2014 at 09:20 PM.
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post #45 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

Seems like the fishing company he worked for (and the Mexican CG) would have a record of when he went missing. Should be pretty easy to verify. Bottom line though is that he washed up on an island in a small open boat, the only question is how long was he on it.

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post #46 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

Do we know it was an open boat? I haven't seen a picture of the boat.

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post #47 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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Seems like the fishing company he worked for (and the Mexican CG) would have a record of when he went missing. Should be pretty easy to verify. Bottom line though is that he washed up on an island in a small open boat, the only question is how long was he on it.
I wonder who originally said it was 16 or 13 months? I'm not sure you could reasonably track time accurately being alone in a boat after several months. I suppose you could scratch a line in a piece of wood for each sunset?

If this guy speaks only Spanish and he washed ashore in the Marshall Islands there could be some confusion around how long he was at sea; or thought he was at sea. I doubt there are many Spanish speakers on the Marshall Islands so perhaps there is some confusion from the language barrier?
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post #48 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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Do we know it was an open boat? I haven't seen a picture of the boat.
They posted the pictures earlier today and the boat would survive it ( follow links in origional story ) however I don't know about the guy surviving and there may be no record or report of him missing if he was engaging in illegal activities llike finning sharks they did say no drugs were found on the vessel

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post #49 of 72 Old 02-04-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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They posted the pictures earlier today and the boat would survive it ( follow links in origional story ) however I don't know about the guy surviving and there may be no record or report of him missing if he was engaging in illegal activities llike finning sharks they did say no drugs were found on the vessel
If he left the beach with any drugs, it's safe to assume that they would have been consumed fairly early in the voyage....
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post #50 of 72 Old 02-05-2014
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Re: 16 Months at adrift at Sea

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If he left the beach with any drugs, it's safe to assume that they would have been consumed fairly early in the voyage....
Sailin' that boat, high on cocaine, Casey Jones you better watch your course...
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