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Shipwrecked soldier survived 66 days during sea on rainwater, tender fish and prayers


Louis Jordan, right, walks from a Coast Guard helicopter to a Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in Norfolk, Va., after being found off a North Carolina coast, Thursday, Apr 2, 2015. His family says he sailed out of a jetty in Conway, South Carolina, on Jan. 23, and hadn’t been listened from since. (Steve Earley/The Virginian-Pilot around AP)

Louis Jordan’s Facebook page foreshadowed his fate. A year ago, the 37-year-old South Carolina man began posting photos of himself on his beloved 35-foot sailboat, Angel, which he had painstakingly restored. Over a entrance months, he uploaded cinema of food he had jarred and fish he had held for dinner. Jordan, it seemed, was scheming for a journey.

On Dec 28, 2014, he posted a video to Facebook. It was grainy footage of a lady recounting a nearby genocide experience.

Less than a month later, Jordan would be a one confronting genocide during sea.

On Thursday, a bearded, sunburned and droughty Jordan was discovered from atop his busted boat. He had been blank for 66 days, during that his family had feared him drowned. Jordan told a Coast Guard that he had survived on rainwater and tender fish.

The usually other nourishment he had was spiritual. In a phone call to his father after his thespian rescue, Jordan pronounced he had prayed for himself and his family. His father answered that he, too, “prayed and prayed” for his son’s protected return.

“It’s amazing,” Jordan’s mother, Norma Davis, told a Associated Press. “It’s been really formidable not meaningful anything and we usually feel like all of a prayers have come true. They’ve been answered.”

The genuine life chronicle of Cast Away is all a some-more conspicuous given a time and stretch Jordan apparently drifted alone during sea. By a day of his rescue, he had trafficked roughly 500 miles from home. The Coast Guard officials who helped rescue him said they had never famous anyone to tarry so prolonged during sea though food or water.

The tale began on Jan 23, when Jordan set cruise from a jetty in Conway, South Carolina on a brief fishing trip. He never returned.

At 6-foot-2 and 230 pounds, Jordan was famous as a “gentle giant.” Facebook posts paint Jordan as a free-spirited immature male who common his father’s Baha’i faith, that binds that Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad and other eremite total were all messengers of a same God. “You’ll substantially never accommodate a nicer guy,” jetty manager Jeff Weeks told a AP. “He is a still lady that many of a time keeps to himself.”

Jordan had spent months regulating adult his vessel and holding it on short, internal fishing trips. But his Jan. 23 speed was something altogether different: a solo outing on a open sea.

“He competence cruise adult and down a Intercoastal Waterway, though he didn’t have a knowledge he indispensable to go out into a ocean,” Weeks told a AP.

Jordan’s father, Frank, is a late clergyman and zealous soldier so he didn’t worry when his son didn’t hit him for a few days. Three days after his son’s luckless fishing trip, Frank posted his possess video of him sailing on a same waters. By Jan. 29, however, Frank was endangered adequate to hit a Coast Guard about his son’s disappearance.

Alerts went adult and down a Atlantic, and an central hunt was launched on Feb. 8. At initial Frank was optimistic. On Feb. 11, he wrote on Facebook: “With God, all things are possible. The Pearson 35 is an overwhelming vessel that can float out all kinds of conditions. Louis might have been blown out to sea by a nor’easter 10 days ago, and he might be creation his approach behind now. we urge that is a case.”

A week later, however, a Coast Guard deserted a search. Several sailors had claimed to have speckled Jordan’s sailboat, though there wasn’t adequate petrify information to slight down his whereabouts, a Coast Guard told a AP.

On Feb. 16, Frank posted a vivid poem to Facebook dedicated “for my child Louis” that enclosed a lines: “life is not to be taken for granted, / no accident, examination or joke.”

“When your son disappears and a weeks wear on, and a continue is cold and a Atlantic is inclement and wild, many terrible thoughts start to go by your mind, and we start to unravel,” he wrote after that day. “Your life becomes a perplexed variety of prayers and tears and doubts.”

Friends chimed in with support. “Prayers from this mother’s heart for we and your family during this terrible ordeal,” wrote one. “I saw this sole sea gull flapping by a sleet currently and done me consider of Louis anticipating his approach home,” wrote another.

But as a weeks dragged on, Frank’s faith began to waiver.  “I also urge that my son Louis Gregory Jordan will be found alive and if not, that he will continue his devout tour with fun and radiance,” he posted on Mar 2. Three days later, his thoughts were darker still: “Now it appears that Louis might be gone. God usually knows when we will join him and a others, we know, a ones who have left us. The ones who played their tools on this theatre of life and afterwards exited to make room for others…”

“Nothing from or about Louis,” he wrote on Mar 10. “You don’t know either to weep or what. When they’re mislaid during sea, usually God knows where they are.”

As his family began to weep his death, Jordan was flapping about 200 miles off a seashore of Virginia. Somehow, his antique sailboat had mislaid a pillar and capsized, injuring Jordan’s shoulder in a process. Normally vigourous and clean-shaven, he had grown skinny though managed to tarry after a plague on usually rainwater and tender fish plucked from a ocean.

On Thursday afternoon, some-more than dual months after Jordan set sail, a German tanker speckled him sitting atop Angel’s upturned hull. As a Coast Guard helicopter raced to a rescue, Jordan climbed aboard a tanker and was finally means to pronounce to his father over a satellite phone.

“Hi dad,” he said. “I haven’t listened we in so long.”

“Oh man, it’s good to hear your voice,” Frank Jordan answered. “People have been praying for you.”

“I’m certain they have,” Louis said. “I’ve been praying, too, each day.” He afterwards began to lament losing Angel, his sailboat, though his father pronounced not to worry.

“Hey, Louis, you’re excellent son. I’m so blissful that you’re alive. We prayed and prayed and we hoped that we were still alive. So that’s all that matters,” Frank Jordan said. “I suspicion we mislaid you.”

Article source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2015/04/03/shipwrecked-sailor-survived-66-days-at-sea-on-rainwater-raw-fish-and-prayers/?tid=pm_pop_b

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