Cunard’s flagship vessel Queen Mary 2 was recently involved a mid-Atlantic mission of mercy, when she was able to help out a stricken female solo ocean rower who had run into difficulties.
The 148,528GT vessel was on a transatlantic voyage from New York to Southampton when she received a request to assist the Canadian solo rower, Mylene Paquette, who had lost both her anchor and satellite phone during a storm at sea.
Paquette had been at sea for 83 days, with two months remaining of her journey when the storm hit and she put out the request in order to help her replace both her anchor and satellite phone. QM2 picked up the request and headed for her location, circling the boat in order to calm the water before lowering a number of watertight canisters containing the items into the water, along with other welcome provisions, including food, bottled water, coffee and tea, shampoo and body lotion.
QM2 captain Kevin Oprey said: “We are happy to have given assistance to Mylène and help her recover from the damage inflicted by the storm. We wish her the very best of luck with her solo Atlantic rowing adventure.”
Clearly excited as well as relieved, Paquette commented: “This is a dream come true! For me to see the Queen Mary 2 in the middle of the Atlantic is something I would have never hoped for. I want to thank all of the members of the crew for making this encounter happen.”
The intrepid rower, whose journey began on July 6 in Halifax, Nova Scotia, is aiming to become the first woman from North America to row solo across the Atlantic, – a total of 2,700 miles.
It’s not the first time that a cruise ship has come to the rescue of a sailor or ship in trouble and it’s the code of the sea for one vessel to offer assistance to another during an emergency.
By Simon Brotherton