|A Slide Presentation from Michael Tougias…
A Storm Too Soon
A True Story of Survival and a Remarkable Rescue
(Based on the 2013 book that the Boston Globe called “Heart-pounding”)
Presented on Oct. 3rd at 7:00 PM
Seventy foot waves batter a tattered life raft 250 miles out to sea in one of the world’s most dangerous places, the Gulf Stream. Hanging onto the raft are three men, a Canadian, a Brit, and their captain, JP DeLutz, a dual citizen of America and France. The waves repeatedly toss the men out of their tiny vessel, and JP, with 9 broken ribs, is hypothermic and on the verge of death. The captain, however, is a tough minded character, having survived a sadistic, physically abusive father during his boyhood, and now he’s got to rely on those same inner resources to outlast the storm.
Trying to reach these survivors before it’s too late are four Coast Guardsmen battling hurricane force winds in their Jayhawk helicopter. They know the waves in Gulf Stream will be extreme, but when they arrive they are astounded to find crashing seas of seventy feet, with some waves topping eighty feet. To lower the helicopter and then drop a rescue swimmer into such chaos is a high risk proposition. The pilots wonder if they have a realistic chance of saving the sailors clinging to the broken life raft, and if they will be able to retrieve their own rescue swimmer from the towering seas. Once they commit to the rescue, they find themselves in almost as much trouble as the survivors, facing several life and death decisions.
Three other vessels with 10 people aboard were caught in the storm, and only 6 survived. This 2007 disaster prompted one of the largest and most intense rescue in Coast Guard history.
Author Michael Tougias will use slides of the storm, the survivors, and the rescue. Amazingly the Coast Guard helicopter crew photographed the men in the raft being pounded by towering waves.
“I enjoy doing these programs,” says Tougias, “because I like to transport the audience into the heart of the storm so that they ask themselves ‘what would I have done.’ I don’t like to do author readings because I think they are boring, but with a slide presentation, the viewer can visually relive the adventure. It’s like watching a movie with the author giving behind the scene details.” A book signing will follow the program, and the presentation is suitable for all ages.
Tougias, known for his fast paced writing style and character-driven stories, tells this true saga in the present tense to give the reader an “edge of your seat, you are there” experience. A Storm Too Soon is a heart pounding read of survival, the power of the human spirit, and one of the most incredible rescues ever attempted.
Michael J. Tougias is an award-winning author of 20 books with Simon & Schuster including several true survival thrillers: Fatal Forecast, Overboard!, Ten Hours Until Dawn, and The Finest Hours (co-authored). Tougias has received the American Library Association “Editors Choice” Award and the Independent Publishers “Best Nature Book of the Year” award. Disney Studio’s is currently filming the movie version of his book The Finest Hours. He is a much sought after lecturer and lives in Massachusetts. Visit www.michaeltougias.com for more information
- Michael Tougias is one of New England’s top speakers, giving over 75 presentations per year.