Tuesday, June 9, 2009

FYI about getting media involved.

Please if the media gets involved more than it is...
 MAKE SURE they are extremely sensitive with our cause.  
We are looking for our friends and would like help from the community, BUT PLEASE LEAVE IT AT THAT.  
We DO NOT want a circus and this is a very fragile time for a lot of people.  

Media- please respect our wishes.


  1. Very understandable, I will pass on the contact names and let them tell the story as they see fit.

  2. Correction, I passed on Lea's number and also I want to make sure you understand that I meant that the searchers should tell the story as they see fit. (not the media)

  3. Hi Melissa,

    I'm a member of the media. I'm the editor and co-founder of Three Sheets Northwest (www.threesheetsnw.com), an online boating magazine. I've been reading this blog daily, following the story and trying to get any updates from the Coast Guard and sheriff's office (so far without any luck). A large percentage of our readers are boaters and are very concerned about the missing sailors.

    I've refrained from calling family members, realizing this is a difficult time for them. But I would really like to speak with any of the survivors to ask about what happened. Would you know how I might get in touch with any of the four sailors who made it ashore?

    Please feel free to call me at 206.349.2832 or email me at deborah@threesheetsnw.com

    My thoughts are with Sean and Gunther's friends and family. It's a very sad situation.


  4. I am sorry that I cannot divulge that information and understand you just want to help. But, what I can do is this...

    If any of the people or families involved would like to speak with Deborah, please call her.

    That is about all I can do... everybody involved is very shaken and fragile, Thank you for continuing to respect their space. And thank you for your concern, we really hope your boating community feels compelled to help.

  5. Also for Deborah,
    if this helps, this was someone's account of their story...

    jesika said...
    Hey guys, I was with Jessica and her dad Steve when the talked to the girls last night. So here is all the information we got from them just incase it hasn't been added yet.

    The trip out was normal not even enough wind to sail so they used the outboard. On thewasback it was enough wind to actually sail so they put up and pulled the motor out of the water. At some point the wind got worse which as we all have heard pushed the boat over. All 6 tried to bring the boat upright but when they realized that wasn't gonna work they climed on top on the hull of the boat that was out of the water. The weight of all 6 people on top was causing the boat to sink so Sean, Gunther and the two girls decided to swim while the other guy and girl stayed with the boat. Sean told them once you hit the water you swim hard and you swim fast cause you only have 20 mins to get to shore. They all 4 dove in and started swimming but in no time were spread out. Sean and Gunther on the outside edges with the girls in the center.

    The girl who made it to shroe stated that the only reasean she feels she got the was due to the current and the waves. At one point she turned around and saw how spread out they were and swam back to Sean but he told herto just keep swimming and don't stop till you get there. Once she got the the beach she turned to look back and couldn't see the boat or the other three people in the water. At that point is when she entered the woods where she yelled for help, she heard whistles back and forth for anout 30 mins but wasn't able to tell where they were coming from or who it was.

    The girl who was stranded on the cliff wears glasses and lost them when the boat capsized. She was very disoriented and doesn't remember much except swiming till she hit the cliff. The cliff was 60 feet at it's lowest point which is where she believesshe wasstranded at. She was there for approx 4 hrs until the CG rescued her.

    They did let us know that Sean was wearing khaki shorts and a white t-shirt and his Billy Goat hat, and gunther was in shorts and a blue t-shirt. All of them had flip flops on. But were not sure of the colors for those.

    It was very hard forthem to even tell the few details that they had but I thank them for finally getting ahold of the family.

    As for the areas that I assisted in searching today, Jessica, Tess, Erin and I searched Mud Bay from the tressel all along the inner cove in all the little nooks and caverns when the tide was out around 1PM.

    We did find a single blue old navy flip flop appx size 11, at mud bay when you first come off the tracks in the derift wood debree but are not sure if it belong to any of the boys.

    Hopefully all this information elps you that are still helping search. I thank you all very much for your dedication and support.

    Jesika T

  6. Personally, I would like the media to look into why the coast guard and police are not doing anything any longer.

  7. Hi Melissa,

    Thanks for responding, and for sharing that account. I can imagine that everyone involved is going through a very difficult time. I really hope that Sean and Gunther are found soon.

    I also hope that something that can be learned from what happened to help prevent future tragedies like this. If we can help encourage boaters to be careful, that's our goal.

    Anybody involved is welcome to call or email me.


  8. I have spoken with a couple people from the CG and they assured me they went above and beyond what they normally do in these situations. They have to look at the cold hard facts when making these decisions. In the unofficial information the CG gave me, they told me it was a really hard decission to make personally and professionally, eight of them had to come together and mutually decide and then they spoke to the families about it before they stopped. They have to look at the cold hard facts when making these decisions. They have to look at "survivorbility" according to "facts", they said people in general have about 2-4 hours without life jackets in water that temp. So after 10 hours of searching a relatively small area.... They are looking for people and not bodies.... It is so hard to think like that.... but They really did do more than they had too.
    This particular SAR went for 13-14 hours, usually on a mission like this it will only last 2-4 hours... tops. They also went through 3 aircrews (1 MAYBE 2 is typical). Their decision was not taken lightly by any of the CG and it is especially hard when they are working with families and huge communities of friends like this one. The Bellingham Coast Guard actually did more for our friends than they had too, so please understand we should not be upset with them.