On day two of their once-in-a-life sea adventure, US couple Tanner Broadwell and Nikki Walsh found their sailboat capsized, leaving everything they owned floating in the Gulf of Mexico.
Luckily, the couple and their pet pug Remy escaped injury when the 8.5-meter boat hit something and sank Wednesday in the Gulf of Mexico off the southern state of Florida. But the couple says just about everything else on the boat floated away.
Broadwell, 26, and Walsh, 24, a couple from mountainous state of Colorado, shared a dream of leaving their mundane lives behind and sailing around the world.
Last year, to fulfill their dream, the couple sold their belongings, spent 10,000 US dollars buying and fixing a 49-year-old sailboat and moved to a the seaside town of Tarpon Springs, getting ready for their lifetime adventure.
The couple's boat before the sail.
Before the trip, the couple had no sailing experience. The two learned to sail from Broadwell’s father, who guided the young couple to sail along the Gulf Coast and taught the two amateurs some sailing skills.
Last Tuesday, Broadwell and Walsh finally set sail, together with their travel companion Remy.
The next day, everything went wrong at night when the couple made their way
to John’s Pass for docking.
When the couple sailed into a new port, fog rolled in and they lost track of the navigation buoys. While Broadwell tried to steer them out of the uncharted channel, the boat hit something and the keel was ripped off the bottom.
Walsh called on-water assistance Sea Tow immediately. “My hands are shaking," she told the Tampa Bay Times. "I know I probably sounded like a crazy person to them. I’m stuttering trying to talk to them.”
Before the rescue team came, the couple could only save some cash, their identification cards and their pet dog, while watching their other belongings float away in the dark.
"I sold everything I had to do this," Broadwell said, "and I lost everything in a matter of 20 minutes."
Safe and sound on land with their family now, the couple was confronted with another challenge. It may cost them up to 10,000 dollars to remove the sunken boat out of the water, but the only things they have left only adds up to 90.
The couple have reached out for help on the fundraising platform GoFundMe.
Though their first try failed, the couple are still determined to realize their dream.
"I’m not going to give up now," Broadwell said. "I’m going to get another boat down the road."