Sunday, June 18, 2006


My in-laws keep their boat in a boatyard in Tiverton, RI during the winter. It's taken out of the water and shrink wrapped for the winter, then put back in the water for the spring. Once it goes in the water, they keep it at that marina for a couple of weeks for repairs, cleaning, etc. Once the nice weather comes, they cross the Narragansett Bay to their home marina in Wickford. This year, they were in a slip next to a sailboat named Free Spirit. Aboard were four people, three Englishmen and a young woman we would find out was from Newport, RI. Jonathan had fun talking with Molly and Jack (one of the younger men). The spent time talking with him and told him about their world trip that would continue as the better weather arrived. That was early May. This past Friday we had the noon news on when we heard about a sailboat that had left Newport only days before was being searched for by the Coast Guard. Steven & I looked at each other and said, "Naw. It couldn't be those people." Sadly it has turned out to be the very ones. Jonathan told us after we left that day back in May, that he had a crush on Molly because she was pretty and nice.

Apparently the Free Spirit was caught up in the stormy waters that Tropical Depression Alberto had created in the Atlantic Ocean, as it came north. The captain called his step-daughter on the satellite phone to say they needed help. That was Wednesday and the search began with U.S. and Canadian coast guards. This afternoon, the rescue search was called off after no sign of the Free Spirit or her crew.

We're aghast at the realization that we met these people, spent an afternoon chatting with them and now they are all gone at Mother Nature's hands.

Rest in peace
Molly Finn, 19
Jack Bielecki, 19
Jacek Bielecki, 56
Richard White, 34

Your families and friends are in our thoughts and prayers.


KKT said...

oh jenn :( that is sooo sad.

Kathy said...


That is so very sad Jenn.

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