BOSTON, Mass. (WPRI) — The Coast Guard says a 22-year-old man, missing for eight days along with his mother on a boating trip, tried to find his mother when their boat sank, but failed.
Nathan Carman was found drifting in a four-person life raft on Sunday night, about 100 nautical miles south of Martha’s Vineyard. Monday, Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Nicole Groll told Eyewitness News the story of survival Nathan related to them.
The “Chicken Pox,” the 32-foot aluminum center console boat Nathan and Linda, 54, had been in on Sunday, Sept. 18, had sunk after they set out from Ram’s Point Marina in Point Judith. It had taken on water in the vicinity of Block Canyon off New York and sank, but the reason was not known, said the Coast Guard.
“When the boat started taking on water, he got his life raft, he went looking for his mom, and he could not find her,” reported Groll.
Nathan had a life vest, food, and water on the life raft, and good weather while he drifted. Eventually, a cargo freighter, the “Orient Lucky,” found Nathan, picked him up, and contacted the Coast Guard. Nathan did not need medical attention.
The “Chicken Pox” had been required to have the life raft in its safety equipment because of rules about its length.
As of Monday morning, Nathan was still on the “Orient Lucky,” which will bring him back to Boston sometime Tuesday, where he’ll talk more with Coast Guard officials.
“When Nathan Carman comes back to shore, he will be met with Coast Guard officials who will be speaking with him to get a clear understanding of the case and we’ll go from there and hopefully prevent something like this from happening again,” Groll explained.
Linda Carman had been living in Middletown, Conn., while Nathan currently lives in Vermont.
Petty Officer Groll said there are no plans to reopen the search to find Linda Carman; they are beyond “the survivability window,” she said. There are also no plans to try and recover the boat from the deep sea.
The Coast Guard said with any search and rescue case, it is their protocol to meet with survivors; their main concern now is that Nathan is safe and reunited with his family, Groll said.
This isn’t the first time tragedy has hit the family. In 2013, Nathan Carman’s grandfather was shot in the head and killed in Connecticut. There were no arrests made. Two years prior to that in 2011, Nathan went missing after becoming distraught over the death of his horse. He was found in Sussex County, Virginia.