Epilogue. “Even Butter Wouldn’t Bring It Back” On September 18th the crews of Restive and Sparky will gather in Marion for the presentation of the Bavier Trophy to Sparky’s crew for their courage and seamanship during a rescue at sea one late afternoon in early July.
Excerpts from two letters capture something of the bond that grew between the crews.
July 8th Dear Rob
It’s been a week since you took us aboard Sparky from our life raft. . . .So thank you, Eric – for being strong and helping us aboard, thank you for understanding some of our emotions as you took us in. Thank you, Jack – for being so strong, for hugging me from the raft over the lifeline, and, later, for your sense of the ridiculous, helping re-attach me to reality and the present, and not the rescue. Thank you, Nancy – for your warmth, generosity, nursing, and selflessness. Thank you, Bob – for applying your seamanship skills perfectly at the right time for Restive’s crew – and for cooking, cleaning, and loving each of us.
And Rob, thank you. You exemplify the essence of being a skipper, of helping others in need, under all circumstances – from the mundane to the extreme. Cool-headed, experienced, strong, thoughtful, skillful and prepared. Thank you.
August 21st Dear Jamie,
Hearing the account from your perspective and the thoughts and conversations of the Restive crew prior to and during the rescue was fascinating! I assume that your experience that day will stay with you for a the rest of your lives, and as strong as your lifelong friendships with these extraordinary men have been in the past, this experience will create a bond that few people ever enjoy.
Know this is from our heart – we will never forget the calm, courageous, caring, thoughtful, gentlemanly men that we had the honor of meeting on July 1, 2015. You all have affected our lives in a most wonderful way. The crew of Restive showed us how to handle adversity with the utmost of grace and courage, and we will never forget any of you.
Warmest regards, Nurse Nancy and Bob
And finally this:
August 28th James,
I came back yesterday from a three-day sail on Restive with George to Block Island, Tarpaulin Cove and back to Jamestown, and it was great fun. Needless to say, the food was superb, matched only by the wine and company. I did have to toss out the French toast, which was still in the oven. Even butter wouldn't bring it back.
Thank you all for the wonderful responses to this series, which is now available in its entirety at: www.jamesgblaine.com.