A 62-year-old Florida man was rescued after being found clinging to his capsized boat in the Atlantic Ocean.
According to Florida Today, the harrowing tale of the boater Stuart Bee began Friday afternoon when he sailed his 32-foot Sea Ray from Cape Marina at Port Canaveral alone. Bee was reported missing on Saturday when he did not return.
The U.S. Coast Guard sent out a C-130 Hercules rescue plane to search for Bee and issued a call to all boats and ships in the area to keep a lookout for the missing vessel.
A spokesperson for the U.S. Coast Guard said mechanical issues disabled Bee’s boat. Bee told them that he was awakened just after midnight Saturday to find his boat was taking on water and sinking.
As his boat capsized, Bee was able to hold onto a small portion of the hull that remained above the waves. At sunrise on Saturday, Bee said he saw a ship and took off his shirt and waved to attract its attention. Luckily, the crew of the container ship, Angeles, was alert to the search for Bee, spotted him, and rescued him shortly after.
“Saving lives at sea is our highest calling. This is a truly incredible outcome that demonstrates the bond among all mariners and our community,” said Captain Mark Vlaun, commanding officer of Sector Jacksonville. “Thank you to our mission partners that launch into action and to all who got the word out to find and rescue Mr. Bee.”
The New York Times reports that Bee refused the Coast Guard’s offer to pick him up, and “decided to stay onboard the Angles, which is scheduled to arrive in Wilmington, Delaware on Tuesday.”
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