El Faro Grassroots Efforts

For the past few days the entire gCaptain team has been focused on learning more about the El Faro incident but right now I am returning from Florida (I might fly back to FL in a few days) and am redirecting the team to support efforts to help the El Faro crew and families… And we need your help.

In the past few hours We’ve already found commercial SAR rescue assets willing to donate help. What I need is contact information for those already engaged in efforts (big and small) so that gCaptain can help coordinate and publicize efforts. Please don’t post contact information here until it’s vetted by our team, instead email (john@gcaptain.com) or text (805-456-8644) me directly. I will sort and answer each message tomorrow morning.

Also please post here any LEGITIMATE and recognized efforts already in effect to which our fellow American Mariners may be of service.

You may also post ideas for how we all may help but please think them through first… half-baked ideas will be moderated/removed. STBY for more information. John

Thanks John for posting this! I say we coordinate some boots on the ground, hell I have the next 2weeks off and the only thing stopping me from driving my own boat out to look is my wife being worried I’ll get in the way.

Maritime License Training Co has a 65’ tug. We would volunteer to help

John,

Here is where you might target some of your efforts and assets: "Taiwanese Interest Attacks Jones Act using El Faro Sinking"

We don’t need those parasites and their traitor lackey John McCain using this tragedy as feedstock.

[QUOTE=CaptRJRUSSO;170651]Maritime License Training Co has a 65’ tug. We would volunteer to help[/QUOTE]

That is [I][U]very[/U][/I] generous Captain. The USCG just announced their search will end tonight. We are in contact with a team of SAR professionals to continue the search. They are the same team that picked up the search for the two Florida teens who went missing from on their boat this summer (I can’t provide details but they were successful in find evidence for the boys’ families). I’ll have a member of that team contact you directly.

CMJEFF, they will be calling you as well :smiley:

Do any other forum members have access to aviation assets or vessels in the area they are willing to donate to the search efforts?

Many thanks to the many people who called and wrote me personally to offer thanks. I am closing this thread while we sort through the offers and forward them to the right people. That said, I will continue to be available to those who wich to email me.

Just a quick update. We are in contact with Tote and have offered to pass along the considerable donations that have been emailed and texted to me via this thread. Tote is also working full steam to set-up a charitable entity to accept donations that will benefit all families.

[B][I]My suggestion for further donations is to wait for that entity to be established. [/I][/B]

If, however, you want to do something now then then you have two options. Option one is to contact your Alumni Association (a few already have funds setup) or visit your local SIU or AMO union hall and donate through their fund. This option will not benefit all families equally or directly (as the upcoming official Tote sponsored fund promises to do) but it is a start.

If you are specifically dedicated to continuing the search immediately, then I know of only one resource committed to doing that: Cheif Engineer Richard Pusatere’s search fund set up by his wife Emily. https://www.gofundme.com/richpusatere

I feel sad and a bit helpless in writing this update.

Yesterday I contacted Tote to offer help. Specifically I wanted a legitimate fund for which I could direct our readers to donate money to support the crew families. I received a response directly from the Tote CEO and had phone calls with their CFO. They were very responsive and are working on this diligently and openly but it will take more time.

Second I wanted some means of coordinating further search and recovery efforts. gCaptain does not have the resources to coordinate all the donations I have received via this thread but, as mentioned above, we did find a commercial SAR rescue team willing to donate help. A team that has recent success off the coast of Florida coordinating with the USCG in a large-scale search and rescue effort. I facilitated an introduction and the team offered their services and assets to Tote. The company CEO responded promptly as follows:

Thank you for your offer.
The NTSB is now in charge but thank you anyway.

Respectfully,
Anthony

I thank the gCaptain community for their generous donations and am personally saddened that we could not put them to full use. I have reopened this thread for comments but we are no longer accepting donations of any kind. When the official family fund opens for donations we will make an immediate announcement. If you feel strongly about continuing the search then please do so via the Campaign set up by Chief Richard’s family: https://www.gofundme.com/richpusatere If you want to donate time then please follow the letter writing instruction on Richard’s page.

I apologize for not being able to do more with the amazing resource of generous and knowledgable members of the gCaptain community.

-John

This thread has been reopened to allow comments and constructive criticism.

Thanks John for your efforts. I do not believe in miracles but I did hold out hope that we could return at least one crew member’s remains to their families.

I am sure the NTSB is on top of it.

At the request of the Chief Engineer’s father we are posting this petition which can be signed by clicking the following link: https://www.change.org/p/barack-obama-united-states-coast-guard-u-s-house-of-representatives-new-york-state-senate-u-s-senate-united-states-navy-united-states-air-force-uscg-southeast-continue-the-search-of-the-ss-el-faro-crew

The SS El Faro was a 791 foot cargo ship charged with bringing commercial goods to Puerto Rico. Early on Thursday, October 1, while near the center of Category 4 Hurricane Joaquin, the El Faro reported that it had lost propulsion, was taking on water and listing. No reason was given for the loss of power, and no further communication was received. Because of the hurricane conditions, the Coast Guard could only do limited search and rescue until Sunday, October 4, and even then visibility was limited. On October 5, one lifeboat and less than a handful of survival suits (of approx. 46) were found. One survival suit contained human remains. Two debris fields were found, one near the El Faro’s final position and another one located 69 miles northeast of the first debris filed, evidence that there was substantial movement of debris and potentially any lifeboats or survivors. On Wednesday, October 7, the Coast Guard called off the search.

The US Coast Guard has done a fantastic job searching for the crew, but we are asking that they give it more time. Six days is well within the survival window for any trained mariner in a lifeboat and or life raft. These lifeboats and rafts are provided with food and water. Only one lifeboat was recovered and only one lift raft; there are 4 more remaining. The body found in the survival suit is evidence that the crew was trying to abandon ship. Survival suits would not have been donned until the crew was actively abandoning ship. These twenty-eight Americans deserve our best efforts in locating them as long as they have a possibility of survival. We are well within the survival window for this tragedy. There are hundreds of islands in the Bahamas, many are uninhabited.

The crew of the El Faro is 28 American and 5 Polish men and women who are parents, husbands, wives, children, and friends. They are experienced mariners who are well-trained. The crew of the El Faro deserves a chance to be found. Please help by signing this petition to ask the US Coast Guard and all other able agencies to please continue the search.

Here is the link to details about the official El Faro family fund as promised:
http://gcaptain.com/el-faro-family-fund-heres-how-you-can-help/

I can not give details but the grassroots effort we handed off too had its first operation today. We hope to provide an update soon as the search progresses. If you want to learn more please make a donation to the following link and you will be the first to hear:

P.S. If you don’t want to hear more and think this is foolish, donate anyway… even if the operation brings nothing but closure to one family it’s worth the effort.
P.S.2 It’s only been 10 days and many islands are near the wreckage. (Yes, I do like betting against the odds and rooting for the underdogs!)

I am assuming people have checked the islands, correct? :confused:

[QUOTE=john;171460]I can not give details but the grassroots effort we handed off too had its first operation today. We hope to provide an update soon as the search progresses. If you want to learn more please make a donation to the following link and you will be the first to hear:

P.S. If you don’t want to hear more and think this is foolish, donate anyway… even if the operation brings nothing but closure to one family it’s worth the effort.
P.S.2 It’s only been 10 days and many islands are near the wreckage. (Yes, I do like betting against the odds and rooting for the underdogs!)[/QUOTE]

I hope someone is still searching. It wouldn’t be a surprise to me to hear news of survivor(s) in the weeks to come.

The extended family of El Faro’s Master Captain Michael Davidson has established a fund to support his two daughters as they pursue their undergraduate and graduate degrees. Here is a link to the fund is: https://www.gofundme.com/michaeldavidson