Frenchman and his cat make daring leap to safety from storm-tossed sailboat In this frame from video provided by the U.S. Coast Guard, a Frenchman with his cat tucked inside his clothing, at right, stands on his sailboat before making a leap Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015, jumping to a waiting rescue ship, left, south of Alaska. The video shows the Frenchman on the rigging pole near the bow of his sailboat, riding wave after wave until making a dramatic leap over the railing of the Tor Viking. (Coast Guard via AP)
Frenchman and his cat make daring leap to safety from storm-tossed sailboat
Lexile

A Frenchman with his cat tucked inside his clothing made a daring leap of faith.  It came when he jumped to a waiting rescue ship from his sailboat. His vessel was being battered by high seas south of Alaska.
 
The Coast Guard captured the dramatic video from a C-130 Hercules airplane.  It was monitoring the Oct. 20 rescue. The man's identity hasn't been released. But Petty Officer Lauren Steenson in Kodiak said the sailboat was named La Chimere.
 
The man activated a location beacon Oct. 20. It was about 400 miles south of Cold Bay, Alaska. The C-130 was dispatched to assess the situation.
 
The airplane crew made radio contact with the mariner.  He reported his 30-foot sailboat lost its rudder and rigging in heavy seas and 46-mph winds.
 
"With the 20-foot seas, his boat is getting pretty well thrown around," she said.
 
He had no control. And the boat was "pretty much dead in the water," adrift in high seas.
 
The Coast Guard made contact with the Polar Pioneer.  It is an oil-drilling vessel used by Royal Dutch Shell off Alaska's northwest coast this summer. The ship and support vessels were nearby as they make their way back to Port Angeles, Washington.
 
The Polar Pioneer sent a support ship, the Tor Viking, to rescue the sailor.
 
Video shot by the Coast Guard shows the Frenchman on the rigging pole near the bow of his sailboat.  He was riding wave after wave until making a dramatic leap over the railing of the Tor Viking.
 
The video shows the man disappearing behind the railing head first with his legs last to disappear behind the Tor Viking's railing. After a few seconds, a crewmember of the Tor Viking is seen walking toward the man. He then was able to stand up.
 
Steenson said the pilot of the C-130 told her the sailor placed his cat inside either his sweater or coat. This was done before making the leap.
 
Once the man was safely aboard the Tor Viking, the Coast Guard marked the position of the sailboat for future reference.
 
It wasn't immediately clear if the man would continue with the Shell ships to Washington State.
 
The sailboat left Dutch Harbor, Alaska, on Oct. 13. It was headed to Vancouver. Steenson said reports didn't indicate if his final destination was Vancouver in Washington or British Columbia.

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CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why didn't the airplane rescue the sailor?
Write your answers in the comments section below


COMMENTS (28)
  • grantm-2-bar
    10/30/2015 - 09:10 p.m.

    The airplane didn't rescue the sailor because it wouldn't be able to hover above it like a helicopter. The airplane contacted a nearby oil boat. The boat sent a rescue boat out to save the man. The stranded guy jumped to the rescue boat with his cat tucked in his shirt.

  • TaylorSeifert-Ste
    10/30/2015 - 09:54 p.m.

    I'm glad the man saved his cat! Reading the story made me wonder why the guy would have cat with him. Just going out for a little trip. I just can't imagine a cat enjoying being on the water or feeling the rocking of the boat at all.

  • alexir-3-bar
    10/31/2015 - 12:54 a.m.

    The airplane didn't rescue the sailor because it can't exactly stop and pick them up and, the C-130 was only sent to observe the situation, and call help. Lastly there was nothing the plane could've done, it can't go low enough to pick him up anyway. I found this a great article because it shows me how important rescue people are and that sometimes you have to go out of your way to help others. I also love to hear about these heart warming stories that make you have hope in humanity again.

  • josephs2-pet
    11/02/2015 - 08:47 a.m.

    Amazing how they guest hoped to sated.

  • damarkoe1-pet
    11/02/2015 - 08:51 a.m.

    the airplane did not save the sailor because he wanted to save his cat first.

  • matthewh2-pet
    11/02/2015 - 09:03 a.m.

    Because the airplane was not the right vecheal

  • nickb1-lam
    11/02/2015 - 11:50 a.m.

    I liked the article and he tucked his cat into his clothing then he made a leap out and he survived. Why was it not clear if he would continue with the shell ships to Washington state.

  • sethg-2-bar
    11/03/2015 - 10:18 p.m.

    The airplane didn't rescue the sailor because in the third paragraph it says "the c-130 was told to assess the situation." I chose this article because I thought the article was interesting. I liked how the frenchman tucked his cat under his shirt while making a daring leap.

  • kenzies1-pet
    11/04/2015 - 09:12 a.m.

    the plain didn't get the man off the boat because the boat wsa getting thrown around to much the sail boat even lost there rutter.

  • jordanr-Orv
    11/04/2015 - 10:50 p.m.

    That's amazing that the cat survived

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