Three Teenagers (Samuel Pelesa, Filo Filo & Edward Nasau) Adrift and Missing in Pacific for 50 days Found Safe
Talk about being thankful …
Three teenage boys set out on October 5, 2010 in their 12-foot long aluminum boat from their home island to one nearby. Their outboard motor broke along the way and left them stranded and adrift in the South Pacific Ocean. The family members of the three boys reported them missing and the New Zealand air force launched a sea search to no avail.
Three teenage boys who spent 50 days adrift in a tiny boat in the South Pacific walked ashore on shaky legs Friday after their chance rescue — celebrated on their home island hundreds of miles (kilometers) away as a miracle that brought them back from the dead.
The trio — Samuel Pelesa and Filo Filo, both 15, and Edward Nasau, 14 — told rescuers they survived on rainwater they collected, a handful of coconuts, raw fish and a seagull that landed on their 12-foot- (3.5-meter-) long aluminum boat.
Samuel Pelesa and Filo Filo, both 15, and Edward Nasau, 14 drfted 800 miles from their place of orgin, Tokelau, a bucolic collection of coral atolls north of Samoa that is New Zealand’s territory, before they were found by a tuna boat San Nikuna.
Tai Fredricsen, first mate aboard the tuna boat San Nikuna, said a crew member spotted a small vessel bobbing in the open sea northeast of Fiji on Wednesday. “We knew it was a little weird,” he said.
As it edged closer to investigate, the crew saw three people aboard waving frantically and asked them if they needed help.
“All they could say was ‘thank you very much for stopping,’” Fredricsen told New Zealand’s National Radio. “In a physical sense, they look very physically depleted, but mentally — very high.”