Captain’s Body Will Travel 1,801 Kilometers to Be Buried

The Crew who were drifting on the boat have already been rescued, but still await a long journey to get home.

The body of Captain Florencio Vásquez Vásquez must travel 1,801 kilometers to get to Golfito, where his family are awaiting for him to be buried.

The 68-year-old man was the captain of the Bismarkpe fishing vessel, which also included three other Tico fishermen. On Friday, February 16, they were left adrift after lightning struck the boat, they immediately asked for help, but it arrived too late.

Don Florencio suffered from diabetes and after 10 days at sea, without food or medical assistance, the captain lost all his strength and died of a heart attack.

The unfortunate situation was announced this Sunday at 5 in the afternoon, when Mrs. Elba Carazo, Vásquez’s wife, received the saddest call of her life. The rest of the crew gave him the bitter news through a satellite phone they were carrying.

This same Sunday, at 10 o’clock at night, the crew of a merchant ship loaded with oil and named Seaways Rubymar, with the flag of the Marshall Islands, learned of the situation and offered to help, they deviated 90 kilometers to give with the boat of the tics.

They warned the coast guard of the Ministry of Public Security that they had rescued the three survivors and the lifeless captain.

It is expected that the Costa Rican soil, they will arrive at Puerto Esmeralda, in Ecuador where they will leave them. Then it will be the Foreign Ministry that begins with the procedure to bring them to Gulf.

The coastguards explained that from the point where they found the fishermen to Puerto Esmeralda there is a distance of 870 kilometers, from that Ecuadorian place to Golfito there are 931 kilometers, that is, the body of the captain and the other three fishermen will travel about 1,801 kilometers in total.

The Foreign Ministry press office confirmed that they will coordinate the transfer of the Ticos.

The nightmare for the captain and the surviving fishermen, Víctor Villegas Umaña, 30, Jorge Fernando Chavarría Mendoza, 63, and Audiel Rivas Bejarano, 39, started from Friday, February 9, that they left and had planned to return on Thursday 22 of that same month.

However, within a week of being at sea they were surprised by a lightning that destroyed the ship’s engine, so they could not move forward.

The captain called his wife, Dona Elba, and told him that she would please alert the coastguards about what happened and ask for help, but the woman said that at that time they did not give her much ball and she felt powerless.

However, Martin Arias Araya, director of the National Coast Guard Service, said that from that day they began an intense process of coordination with authorities from the United States, Colombia and Panama, with the intention of finding the exact location of the Costa Rican ship.

The authorities were faced with the limitation that the Costa Rican fishermen were not using a device known as a “radio beacon”, which would have allowed their rapid location at sea.

For that reason, to determine the place they had to coordinate with the US Coast Guard and a satellite telephone company to carry out a triangulation by means of a satellite call and find the Costa Rican ship.

“This is a radio transmitting device that allows authorities to know exactly the location of a ship on the high seas, these people were not, but they had a satellite phone, which is more expensive than this instrument,” said Arias.

The director of the Coast Guard said that it is allowed to sail up to about 75 kilometers from Costa Rica’s coastline, however, the Ticos boat was more than 300 kilometers from the coast.

The Bismarkpe fishing boat was abandoned at sea, with special lights to avoid an accident with another boat. This could not be towed because it does not work at all.

The Bismarkpe Boat

The ethical authorities said that the owners of this ship do not rule out towing it.

Aracelly Martinez, wife of Audiel Rivas, said that the families of the fishermen meet at Elba Carazo’s house to give each other support and wait for news.

Grace Umaña, Víctor’s mother, said that they spend praying for them to arrive home safely, it hurts that one of them does not come back alive.


Source: La Teja