Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Tragedy That Could Have Been Prevented

As you might have gathered from my last blog, I was pretty impressed with Pacific Bay Resort. So I returned a week later with friend Paul from WA. Frank was the perfect host, and we had a great time watching birds (got to see nesting Crested Oropendola this time), monkeys and an anteater! Plus I ran into a friend named Eric who I hadn't seen since 2004 in Anchorage... small world! The last night we were there (right before dinner), Frank was frantically driving the road (in a golf cart) down to the dock. He muttered, "It's a tragedy. The boat sank and a baby drowned." It turned out that at 9:00 a.m. that morning, 11 Panamanian friends/families loaded into a marginal fishing boat for a day of fun and recreation. Around 10:00 a.m., the seas got too rough and they capsized. They had no life jackets and none of them could swim. It's a wonder that only 3 died (2 small children and their 39 year old aunt). The youngest child (less than 2 years old) washed up on Frank's property. Very sad. Frank will probably never get over seeing that dead baby. I'm thinking of starting some sort of Panamanian Foundation that would teach boaters about the importance of wearing life jackets. On a lighter subject, I'll be away from my blog until April 13 when I return from WA (where I'll be visiting my mother). As a parting shot, I've attached a picture and video of Leslie Koleda (from Olympia WA) riding in the ocean at Pacific Bay Resort.

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