The family of 62-year-old American Stuart Bee sounded the alarm when he went missing after he set out into the ocean from Port Canaveral, Florida,inhis 9.7-meter Sea Ray Stingray boat around 4 p.m. on Friday, November 27, and disappeared. The man did not return by sundown, though he usually did not travel at night, or even 24 hours later. Coast Guard patrol boats and a helicopter were sent to look for the yachtsman. All ships that were in the area were also informed.
B was found on Sunday morning, November 29. At about 11 o'clock the crew of the 225-metre container ship Angeles, passing 86 miles east of the coast, spotted the bow of the almost sunken yacht sticking out of the water on one metre. It was being held by a man who was waving his shirt at the ship to attract attention. The casualty was hoisted aboard and given dry clothes. The first thing B asked: « What day is it today? » Apparently holding on to what was once his boat, he lost track of time.
It turned out that although B hadn't said anything to his family about spending the night on the boat, it had been planned. Staying in the ocean really wasn't going to last at all, but it all went wrong. At some point on Saturday, November 28, Bea's boat broke down and became immobilized. He tried to sort out the problems himself and didn't send a distress signal. Then things took a turn for the worse: after midnight the sailor suddenly woke up because water started to enter the forward cabin. The boat quickly capsized and the water literally pushed Bea out of the cabin through the forward hatch. After the boat nearly sank, her owner had to remain completely still until he was found. Any careless movement could have left him without a lifeline.
The Angeles container ship that rescued Bea is scheduled to arrive inWilmington, Delaware, on December2.