Posted by Erin on October 30, 2012
30 October 2012
To the Membership of Tall Ships America:
Certainly everyone in the sailing ship community will have heard that HMS BOUNTY has been lost off Cape Hatteras. Of the sixteen persons reportedly aboard at the time, we understand that one individual has perished, and that fourteen others were rescued, thanks to the exemplary courage and skill of Coast Guard search and rescue personnel. It appears that the vessel’s master, Robin Walbridge, is missing, and the search continues.
We are certain that everyone in the in the community sends their thoughts, prayers, and best wishes to the family of the individual who perished, to the rescued members of the ship’s company and their families, and to the brave Coast Guard team who carry our hopes for Captain Walbridge.
There is currently much speculation about the loss of the vessel. We believe that further speculation is not helpful, especially in view of the respect that is due to the individuals whose lives are directly affected by these tragic events. Tall Ships America does not have any factual information to add, but notes that there will surely be an official inquiry that will assemble much more complete information than is available to anyone now. We are confident that our membership, if called upon, will cooperate with that inquiry in the full spirit of professionalism upon which the sail training movement depends.
For now, we appeal to our members to lend their thoughts and support to the people of BOUNTY and their families, to join us in thanking the Coast Guard rescue team for their heroism on behalf of our colleagues, and to sustain hopes for Captain Walbridge’s safe return.
Captain Michael Rauworth, Chairman Captain Bert Rogers, Executive Director