Cape May Sailors Found Alive Clung To Hope For 10 Days

The two New Jersey sailors found alive after 10 days missing at sea are telling their tale.

Kevin Hyde, 65, and Joe DiTommasso, 76, were found alive after 10 days at sea.
Kevin Hyde, 65, and Joe DiTommasso, 76, were found alive after 10 days at sea. Photo Credit: US Coast Guard

Kevin Hyde, 65, and Joe DiTommasso, 76, departed Cape May on the Atrevida II NJ 7033HN) on Nov. 27, headed for Marathon FL.They were last in contact with family and friends on Dec. 3, when they departed Oregon Inlet, North Carolina. 

They didn't have any power, fuel, water, food or radios. But they did have hope.

DiTomasso credited his grandfather and "the cross of Jesus," he tells 6abc. "Every morning I'd wake up and kiss it and say the Our Father. And if nobody does not believe there's a Lord, they have a problem."

DiTomasso told the outlet he and Hyde were sucking water out of water lines and stopping their dog, Minnie, from drinking because she "wanted to drink everything."

A storm turned them off course in Hatteras, and they lost part of their mast.

Hyde said they turned south in Hatteras when a huge storm blew them off course. The sailors lost part of their mast.

On Sunday, Dec. 11, watchstanders at the Coast Guard Fifth District command center were notified of Hyde and Ditomasso being overdue. A massive search effort was launched.

Hyde and Ditomasso gained the attention of the Silver Muna crew by waving their arms and a flag, approximately 214 miles east of Delaware on Tuesday, Dec. 13 at 4:18 p.m..

They were evaluated by the vessel’s medical staff with no immediate concerns. Hyde and Ditomasso will remain aboard Silver Muna as it proceeds to its next port of call in New York City, where they were transferred to a Coast Guard vessel for further evaluation and reunification with their family and friends.

Coast Guard, Navy, and maritime partners searched a combined 21,164 square miles of water, spanning from northern Florida to the waters east of New Jersey.

Search and Rescue crews involved in this search effort included:

  • Coast Guard Air Station Elizabeth City HC-130 Hercules airplane and MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews
  • A Coast Guard Air Station Clearwater HC-130 Hercules airplane crew
  • A Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry airplane crew
  • A Coast Guard Air Station Cape Cod MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew
  • USCGC Oak (WLB 211), homeported in Newport, Rhode Island
  • USCGC Richard Snyder (WPC 1121), homeported in Atlantic City, North Carolina
  • USS San Jacinto (CG 56), homeported in Norfolk, Virginia
  • Multiple commercial and recreational vessels along the U.S. eastern seaboard

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