Canadian Sailor Gunned Down in Honduras
Canadian gunned down in Honduras was avid sailor
Published On Sat Dec 4 2010Email Print Share9Rss Article
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The daughter of an Ontario yachtsman murdered by bandits off the coast of Honduras survived the attack and is safe in nearby Belize, a relative says.
Myda Egrmajer saw a gang of thieves shoot her father, Milan Egrmajer, 55, as they were moored in a remote lagoon Thursday night, where they had sought shelter from bad weather out on the open seas.
Myda, 24, and her semi-retired engineer father had been travelling the region on his 35-foot yacht, the Adena, said her uncle, Kelly Wilson.
Wilson, reached by phone at his home in Mahone Bay, N.S., said his niece was later picked up by a passing yacht from Australia.
“She's physically okay,” Wilson said, adding she is now in Belize.
How she escaped the attack is still a mystery to the local investigators.
Leonel Sauceda of the Honduran Public Security department said the Adena was moored at a lagoon called El Diamanté, known to boaters in the area as a place to overnight. Sometime around 9 p.m. Thursday, a small boat apparently arrived at the lagoon, Sauceda said.
It's not clear what unfolded next, but Milan Egrmajer's body was found on the boat by authorities on Friday. His body had four bullet wounds to the chest and abdomen.
Sauceda said there is no clear information on how Myda got away.
Her cousin Eric van Riesen told CTV that Milan Egrmajer had a satellite phone on the boat, and “he sent about half a dozen 911 distress calls in those last hours,” which alerted local authorities.
An online report by La Prensa, the largest daily newspaper in Honduras, said Myda called for help after her father was killed and then she called Canadian authorities.
Her aunt, Merrillynn Wilson, speaking from Mahone Bay, told Canadian media she had heard that Myda “set off a flare and scared the pirates off” but acknowledged the family wasn't sure of any details.
The deadly attack occurred near the port of Tela, about 320 kilometres north of the Honduran capital of Tegucigalpa.
Egrmajer started his “seabbatical,” as he called it, in July 2008 on Lake Ontario.
He planned to sail indefinitely, while operating his company, Egrmajer Consulting Inc., from his boat.
Kelly Wilson said he had helped Egrmajer sail his yacht part of the way down to Central America.
Myda Egrmajer, who Wilson said has a degree from Trent University in Peterborough, and lives in Ontario, had gone down to join her father for a few months.
Egrmajer maintained a website documenting his sailing trip aboard the Adena.
With files from The Canadian Press
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