A passing cargo ship miraculously spotted him 86 miles off the coast.
The life of a doomed sailor has been saved by the Angeles.
Stuart Bee was miraculously rescued from the middle of the ocean on Sunday, two days after he departed Cape Marina in Port Canaveral and never returned.
The 62-year-old set out on his 32-foot Seay Ray on Friday; the alarm was raised the following morning when a member of the marina alerted the Coast Guard, telling them Bee typically did not stay out overnight on his boat.
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The command center sent out an alert to all vessels to be on the lookout, scrambling water patrols and even a Hercules C-130 aircraft to scour the sea.
But at 11AM on Sunday morning, it was a crew member aboard the 225-foot cargo vessel the Angeles who amazingly spotted the sailor in distress, 86 miles off the Florida coast.
Incredible pictures taken from aboard the ship show Bee desperately clinging to the bow of his sinking ship, the only part protruding from the Atlantic waters.
Making a bee-line, they threw him a life ring and the exhausted sailor summoned the strength to swim across and climb aboard, before the ship brought him safely back to shore.
He explained to the Coast Guard that his boat had become disabled on Saturday, after suffering mechanical issues.
He was woken abruptly sometime after midnight Sunday when water rushed into the forward cabin and pushed him out of the front hatch of the vessel.
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He clung to the tip of the crippled craft all through the night as the ocean slowly claimed it; but after sunrise on Sunday, he spotted the Angeles in the distance, removed his shirt and began waving at the crew in the hopes of catching their attention — and it worked.
Lacruiser P. Relativo, who was aboard the Angeles, revealed in a Facebook post that Bee didn’t even know what day it was when he was rescued.
“Before I could start questioning, he first asked me ‘What day it is today?’, ‘November 29!’, I responded. By the look on his face, I saw his teary eyes as he made sign of the cross.”
“He was drifted in the open sea for days, maintaining his stance at the top of his capsized boat, to not make any single move as it may trigger his yacht to sink fully.”
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Relativo said the crew offered him hot meals and dry clothes; but instead of giving him a new shirt he gifted Bee with his own favorite “lucky shirt”.
“Saving lives at sea is our highest calling,” Capt. Mark Vlaun, commanding officer of Sector Jacksonville, said after the rescue. “This is a truly incredible outcome that demonstrates the bond among all mariners and our community.”
“Thank you to our mission partners that launch into action and to all who got the word out to find and rescue Mr. Bee.”
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