Survivor of United States boat sinking devastated

Survivor of United States boat sinking devastated

Seventeen people - the youngest just a year old - died when the amphibious boat with 31 aboard sank in stormy conditions at the Table Rock Lake near Branson.

Thirty-one people were aboard the Ride the Ducks boat last Thursday when a sudden, intense storm struck, with winds just shy of hurricane strength churning the lake's waters.

The 17 people killed when a tourist boat sank in a Missouri lake were remembered Sunday (July 22) during a service attended by around 200 people in the tourism community of Branson.

The National Transportation Safety Board and U.S. Coast Guard are hoping the recorder will assist in their investigation into why the boat sank. It is unknown when they will reopen.

All the people who survived when a duck boat ferrying tourists sank in southern Missouri have been released from a hospital. "'I will show you where they are but you won't need them so don't worry.' So we didn't grab them".

Nine of the 11 members of the Coleman family who boarded the boat on Thursday were killed, including four children under the age of 10.

Suzanne Smagala with Ripley Entertainment, said the company is assisting authorities with the rescue effort and that the accident last week was the company's first in more than 40 years of operation in Branson. "I had a chance to talk to her, and it's hard to find the right words to say other than your thoughts and prayers are with her". Mourners lit candles around cars left on the parking lot overnight - believed to belong to the victims.

About a half hour before that duck boat launched, the NWS issued a severe thunderstorm warning. She survived because her grandmother pushed her above the water. Crew members told them a storm was heading toward the area but there didn't appear to be any danger. She couldn't see. Her family was gone.


Carolyn Coleman said she and her husband are planning to make a trip to IN for the funeral after the bodies are released.

A survivor from the family who lost nine relatives said the captain told passengers not to bother grabbing life jackets.

Coleman also said she believed that life jackets would have saved numerous 17 people who died, but the captain told passengers when they set out on the lake not to bother with them.

In an interview with ABC News reporter Bill Hutchinson, he said that the Ride the Ducks boats should not have been on that water at all that day due to the ominous weather reports.

Mayor Karen Best identified the crew member driving the boat as Bob Williams, known informally as "Captain Bob", and said he was a great ambassador for the city.

State and federal investigators were trying to determine what sent the vessel, originally built for military use in World War II, to its demise.

"This storm didn't come out of nowhere", she said.

"When she reached the surface, battered by waves, she said people on a showboat nearby were jumping into the water saving people".

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