hms bounty

HMS Bounty, image via the Bounty Facebook page

Update 3: The Coast Guard has reported that the body of a woman, identified as Ms. Claudene Christian, has been recovered.

A crew aboard an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., located Christian who was unresponsive, hoisted her into the helicopter and took her to Albemarle Hospital in Elizabeth City.

The search for the captain, Robin Walbridge, continues approximately 90 miles southeast of Hatteras, N.C., Monday.

UPDATE 2: As of approximately 0845, the USCG reports the Bounty has sunk. [PHOTOS OF BOUNTY SINKING]

UPDATE 1: Rescuers at the United States Coast Guard swung into action this morning after receiving word that the crew of the 180-foot, three-masted tall ship, Bounty, abandoned ship approximately 90 miles southeast of Hatteras, North Carolina.

The 16-person crew donned cold water survival suits and lifejackets before launching in two 25-person lifeboats.

US Coast Guard watchstanders dispatched a pair of MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City, N.C., to rescue the crew.

The first Jayhawk crew arrived on scene at approximately 6:30 a.m. and hoisted five people into the aircraft, and a second helicopter arrived and rescued nine people.

WATCH: Coast Guard Crews Rescue 14 from Bounty [RESCUE VIDEO]

The 14 people are being flown to Air Station Elizabeth City where they will be met by awaiting emergency medical services personnel.

The C-130 Hercules aircraft remains on scene and is searching for the two missing crewmembers and a third Jayhawk crew is en route to assist search and rescue efforts.

Initial report 

Coast Guard Sector North Carolina initially received a call from the owner of the Bounty saying she had lost communication with the vessel’s crew late Sunday evening.

The Coast Guard 5th District command center in Portsmouth subsequently received a signal from the emergency position indicating radio beacon registered to the Bounty, confirming the distress and position.

An air crew from Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City launched aboard an HC-130 Hercules aircraft, which later arrived on scene and reestablished communications with the Bounty’s crew.

The vessel was reportedly taking on water and was without propulsion.  On scene weather is reported to be 40 mph winds and 18-foot seas.

hms bounty 2

Image via Bounty’s Facebook page

For the last couple days the crew of the Bounty has been posting updates to their facebook page. Here’s the latest image along with a note from her captain below.

Latest Communication from Captain Robin Walbridge. Sent (Saturday night).

Good evening Miss Tracie

I think we are going to be into this for several days, the weather looks like even after the eye goes by it will linger for a couple of days

We are just going to keep trying to go fast and squeeze by the storm and land as fast as we can.I am thinking that we will pass each other sometime Sunday night or Monday morning

All else is well

The following is a list of those who were rescued, and those who are still missing:

Rescued were:

  • Daniel Cleveland, 25
  • John Svendsen, 41
  • Matthew Sanders, 37
  • Adam Prokosh, 27
  • Douglas Faunt, 66
  • John Jones, 29
  • Drew Salapatek, 29
  • Joshua Scornavacchi, 25
  • Anna Sprague, 20
  • Mark Warner, 33
  • Christopher Barksdale, 56
  • Laura Groves, 28
  • Jessica Hewitt, 25
  • Jessica Black, 34


  • Claudene Christian, 42

Missing are:

  • Robin Walbridge, 63

The Bounty was built in Nova Scotia in 1960 specifically for the 1962 film, Mutiny on the Bounty, and has also been used in the Pirates of the Caribbean films, Dead Man’s Chest and At World’s End.  As of this year, the vessel has been offered up for sale at a price of $4.6 million.

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    • GPC

      RIP HMS Bounty

      Que Nepture prend soins de toi ainsi que le Capitaine du Navire.

  • Capt. Geest

    Terrible news for the loss of the ship. Hopefully the two crewmen can be located and rescued before its too late. Thoughts and prayers for the missing men and for the safety of the USCG pilots out there flying around in the storm searching for them!

      • Daems Daniël

        Vind daar totààl NIKS “LoL” aan.. Dit is ongehoord misplaatst !

  • Henry Araujo

    What a terrible tragedy. I remember when the HMS Bounty was docked at the State Pier in Fall River, MA.

  • george sedun

    i was on the us bonty mamy many years ago when it was docked in st. petersburg, florida

  • Stewart

    This beautiful ship was docked in St. Petersburg, Florida for many years. They had plenty of advance notice of this storm. There is no excuse for it being out in that situation. At the minimum this was negligence by the owner, if not an intentional opportunity to sink the boat to collect insurance. What a shame.

    • Carole

      They had plenty of advance notice of this storm.

      This is the part that I don’t get. The Florida bound ship left Connecticut on Friday. The 5 AM advisory and discussion from the NHC were already saying that large portions of the US east coast would be affected early the next week and had just posted tropical storm watches for the Carolinas. The models were clearly showing the westward shift back to the coast.

      Who thought it would be a good idea to set sail for Florida at that time?

  • Daems Daniël

    Very very sad.. Hope & pray they find the 2 missing persons.. & Even sad is the loss of that beautiful LADY… Last time I had the chance to sail along with her, was in Europe – Belgium – Ostend , 2 years ago… This is heartbreaking …


    Dearest Drew and Christina,
    We are deeply saddened to hear this info, are thoughts and prayers are with your missing crew members. We are very happy Drew that you made it.
    The Klamans
    Bryan Anndra Zach

  • Harry Karetas

    How disgusting and so avoidable. Like stay put in safe Harbour and batten down or go north. This is terrible!

    • Clare

      Not to mention the loss of life. At least one crewperson dead and the captain is still missing.

  • http://same Capt. Jabez W. Churchill

    Irrespective of the decision to embark, my heart aches for those who faught and may well have lost two comrades. The sea, however, always cradles her sons and daughters. If they are lost, they surely are at peace. Thanks to the Coasties! Again and again.

    • Clare

      As someone who has spent their life on the water, cradled in the luft of a sail as a child, I don’t think I could have said it better Captain Churchill. Your heartfelt words in this time of sorrow are greatfully taken. And your sentiment spread to others whose hearts are not at rest.

      Fair winds and following seas to you sir.

      • Anna Hawthorne

        Aye, t’is true~~

    • Anna Hawthorne

      Many hearts are broken this day~ Bounty forlorn, lost.

      “There is a silence where hath been no sound,
      There is a silence where no sound may be….”

      from Thomas Hood ‘Silence’.

      • Carl Ring

        Anna, should we forget this or try to leave something for the families? My e-mail is better-

  • http://n/a joe jones

    somebady should be going to jail … what hell were those fools doing out there in the first place and the coast guard had to go get the iditos

  • capt. hiwater

    my son served as crewmember aboard Bounty six years ago. as an educated & trained boat-handler [and now captain], he was impressed at that time that the bounty was not originally built as a sea-going ship, but rather as a movie prop.
    we are incredulous that the ship didn’t remain in port [in connecticut?] triple its dock lines, and ride it out alongside.
    our thanks to the c.g., and our prayers for all [esp. the two missing]

    • andrew

      this whole incident is both a terrible tragedy in sadly a long list of tragedies, but also really makes my blood boil when I think about how wrong-headed the decision was. As someone with over a decade of professional square-rig sailing experience on most of the great ships still with us (I never severed on Bounty but have on most others) and licensed skipper, I cant conceive of putting the crew in harms way the way this was done. It just not worth the risk and sadly, I have personally seen time and again owners of these ships order them to sea (I’m looking at you Mike Burke) when it simply wasn’t wise or safe to do so. And I’m one of the most gun-ho folks you’ll meet on the water, always chafing at coast guard restrictions on these grand old vessels. In the end, the coast guard showed why they are so valuable and heros, even when we get sometimes grumpy about their inability to understand our particular type of shipping.

  • Alex

    NBC says one of the missing has been found, ‘unresponsive’ and is on the way to hospital.

    • Clare

      Well then, thank goodness you weren’t on this wonderful ship. Since the captain is the only one left missing, I’m sure this person’s family is so greatful for your comments.

      • Dana B.

        He was probably following orders from the owner, who had been trying unsuccessfully to sell the ship and would not have shed tears for its loss and subsequent insurance settlement. The loss of life was certainly not in the plan, but that is a consequence of this kind of stupidity and greed.

  • http://alx capt.ali

    هيك سنت الحياة

  • Brent

    Very sad….let us be grateful for the brave USCG crews that put their lives in harms way to save the crew.

  • Jogos de futebol

    You’re writing really well, had me dependent.

  • Myron T Babler

    Sorry for the loss, of the vessel I was caught in port by Sandy, in Poquoson, VA and road out the storm in my slip it was a long week but my 1963 Choey Lee Turandot held fast without a scratch or even any extra lines. There are two schools of thought on sailing to keep in mind, one is a boat has a better chance off shore in a storm and the other is better safe in dry dock than in the water, neither of which I followed, but I’m still here and safe.

  • Frederic J Feingold

    At first, when I thought that this was the steel hulled replica, I was not so grieved. Turns out it was an all wood version. Sea Going Prop comment above is well noted. I too also immediately thought that this was an Insurance – Suicide event. Crew, as adults, should have exercised some independent judgement. We do better with our little canoe and kayak outings.

  • http://gCaptian William

    Are there plans to find the Bounty and if so raise her ,if the water is not too deep ?

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