Lost at sea for 36 days, 2 Jamaican fishermen found alive
There’s an emotional story of survival tonight involving two Jamaican fishermen who are both lucky to be alive after thirty-six days of being lost on high seas. The boat they were fishing in, Gentle Breeze, had been reported missing from Old Harbor Bay in Jamaica since March twenty-first and was not found until April twenty-fifth. The story of their ordeal is one of hope in the face of absolute despair when the vessel that thirty-six year old Anthony Hibberd and his twenty-five year old colleague Jason Noble were fishing in suffered engine failure after breaking free of a larger vessel it was attached to. The crew of five spent a month and five days adrift without food and water, was reduced to two castaways following the deaths of the boat’s captain and two crewmen. Anthony Hibberd recounted the harrowing experience with News Five.
Anthony Hibberd, Rescued Jamaican Fisherman
“The twenty-first when we ah come in—we ah come in from the twentieth and di first engine mash up from ten o’clock inna di night and di second one mash up ten o’clock di next morning, di twenty-second. no oil inna di engine dem and we tell di captain we need fi go back dah di boat but divine grace, him can’t fix dem. At di time dem ah work pan dem straight inna di night and di engine dem mash up. So we start drift from di twenty-second and three man die, left two of us by di ship. Thirty-six days we spend pan di sea. We feed off ah marass, anything we can eat, sea water cause we neva have any food. Three day alone we had food for.”
Jason Noble, Rescued Jamaican Fisherman
“It’s like dead and alive you know, it was a hard suffering yoh know. Mi neva been through something like dat inna mi life. Mi neva expect something like dat. It was good and normal and everything was alright until di next engine mash up. Drift everyday yoh feel like yoh ah go dead and every time yoh wake up inna di morning yoh feel like yoh have to give thanks to God cause yoh survive and yoh still have life. Every day yoh get up and everything yoh ah si sea. ketch bird fi eat, go overboard like deep and mi si wah shark by di boat. Mi shoot fish fi survive, wi eat marrass. First time mi eva three man dead side ah, good friend mi know from ages ah fishing wid fi dem dead side ah mi. we have fi throw dem overboard.”
“Have you had any form of communication with your family back home in Jamaica since being rescued and brought to Belize?”
“No me noh get no communication from Belize but on di ship we get a lot of communication wid all ah mi family dem, a lot ah mi friend and other people cause pan di ship dem have a phone and dehn let we communicate wid di rest ah people dem. Mi family and everybody call pan di ship and we talk to everybody and get di status and whatever ah go on.”
“Were you able to inform the family of the three dead men of their ordeal at sea?”
“No, mi neva get di chance fi do dat cause me neva get no connection to none of them.”
The dead fishermen could not be identified by their names as they were only known to their peers by their aliases. They are Katoo, Clement and Feron.