At approximately 8 pm on the evening of Wednesday, May 29th, our home and sailboat, The Bertie, was knocked down by a "White Squall," and capsized, 65 miles offshore of the New Jersey coast. We were literally swamped and swallowed under within 60 seconds; water rushed in and we were catapulted off the boat and into the ocean. We were able to climb up on to the bottom of the boat and see if we could dive for the emergency epirb device. No luck, it just was not within reach for the breath we had. About 30 minutes later, the boat started to roll back up, leaving the port side with access, and miraculously with the epirb in view, we grabbed and activated it. That was the last offering of life that Bertie gave us. Peter built Bertie with his own hands and poured years of blood, sweat and tears into her being.
Thanks to the heroic efforts of the US Coast Guard, we are still alive! We were plucked from the water, placed in a basket, hoisted up to the helicopter and shuttled to the AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center with nothing but our lives and just the cloths on our backs!
Everything we owned was lost to the sea ... our tools of the trade, phones, computers, passports, important documents, artwork, photography equipment, photos, travel mementos, home stuff ... everything. We had literally 1minute from the time the squall hit until we were thrown off the boat.
We are so very grateful that we are alive, sustained no injuries and have family who we love and love us, and that is THE most important part of this whole story. We are so grateful for all the help we received from the coast guard, the hospital administrators and the Red Cross. Any donations that you can offer to help us rebuild our lives and start over is wholeheartedly and grateful appreciated. We will update as we learn more from the Coast Guard and watch events unfold in our lives. Please stop by our BERTIE Facebook page if you want to learn more about who we are and who the majestic Bertie was!! We thank you all for the bottom of our hearts.