Given up for dead after 50 days adrift in South Pacific, 3 teens rescued by passing trawler


Three teenagers survived 50 days adrift in a tiny boat in the South Pacific by drinking rainwater and eating raw fish and a seagull before being rescued by a passing trawler, a senior crewman on the fishing vessel said.

The trio — Samuel Pelesa and Filo Filo, both 15, and Edward Nasau, 14 — had been given up for dead on their coral atoll in the Tokelau islands, where a memorial service was held for them after extensive searches failed to find them.

The boys set off on Oct. 5 in their aluminum dinghy from their home island to one nearby. It’s not known how they went missing, but the outboard motor on their boat may have broken down at sea.

Worried family members reported them missing and the New Zealand air force launched a sea search. No sign of the tiny boat was found.

On Wednesday, the tuna boat San Nikuna spotted a small dinghy bobbing in the open sea northeast of Fiji, with three people aboard waving frantically, said first mate Tai Fredricsen. They had drifted 800 miles (1,300 kilometres) from where they set out.

via Given up for dead after 50 days adrift in South Pacific, 3 teens rescued by passing trawler.

Advertisements