Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — American sailor Rimas Meleshyus was rescued by Vietnamese fishermen in Đà Nẵng on Sunday.
The 67-year-old amateur sailor was in good health except for blood pressure. He kept saying “thank you” to the people who had saved his life when he was received in the port of Đà Nẵng’s Mân Quang Border Station.
Through an interpreter, Meleshyus said he was out of water and had little food left and that he was lucky to have come across the fishermen. He said he knew sailing would be risky but had no idea it would be so dangerous. He said he would have died if he met the fishermen several days later.
Fisherman Võ Văn Bích, owner of boat No Qng98785, said he saw Meleshyus waving his shirt for help near Hoàng Sa (Paracel) Islands on January 17.
Bích had been out at the sea for three days and could not return home immediately. So, he decided to take Meleshyus along to go fishing.
After being rescued by Bích and his fellow fishermen, Meleshyus was exhausted and could not move much. The fishermen took turns to take care of him.
Meleshyus had brought with him old newspapers that reported stories about him and his sailing interest when he was in the United States.
Born in Sochi, Russia, Meleshyus lived in the United States for more than 20 years but kept moving. He started sailing six years ago on an engine boat.
Meleshyus started sailing on May 25, 2017, from Hawaii. While going from Saipan Island of the United States to Yokohama in Japan, the boat’s engine broke down.
Meleshyus tried to contact people through satellite for two days before finally giving up. Since he was alone, he tried to take as many photos as possible to let people know who he was.
Meleshyus said he would update his journey on Facebook with pictures of the hard-working fishermen.
According to Commander Hoàng Ngọc Quế, representative of Đà Nẵng border guards, Meleshyus will be well cared for before being received by the External Relations Office for further procedure. — VNS