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Seafarers’ charity supports crew after death at sea

The crew of a chemical /oil tanker was left shocked and devastated after one of their crew mates suffered a heart attack and died while at sea.

When the ship, Horizon Thetis, called at Immingham port late September, the agent contacted seafarers’ charity Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) to say the crew requested a Catholic priest go on board.

Immingham port chaplain Bryony Watson

AoS Immingham port chaplain Bryony Watson arranged for local priest Fr Andrew Cole, from St Mary on the Sea Grimsby to visit the ship.

“We boarded the ship to find the crew very quiet and sad. The captain led us to the conference room and told us that while they had been at sea, the ship’s electrician, had had a heart attack and died within minutes, despite the crew attempting CPR,” said Bryony.

“Understandably, the captain and crew were very shaken and upset, especially the crew member who had the cabin next door to the electrician,” she said.

Bryony and Fr Andrew listened to the crew while they recounted the experience and talked about their friend; the captain told them of the years they had spent at sea together, and how both families – the family of the electrician back in Bulgaria and the family on board the ship had experienced a great loss.

“The crew requested that Fr Andrew bless the ship, and most particularly the cabin of their dead friend. It was very shocking and totally unexpected as he had been a healthy 62-year-old and had died within minutes,” said Bryony.

She added, “The captain was great and took good care of the crew. They were also grateful for our visit, for the blessing and for being there to listen and offer some comfort.”
Source: Apostleship of the Sea

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