Marianne Sunderland excitedly posted to her daughter Abby’s blog at 11:27 last night that Abby had been found and is alive and well. The post came just moments after she received word from Australian Search and Rescue that their aircraft had found her vessel upright, though without rigging. The aircraft was able to make radio contact and Abby confirmed that she was fine and in good spirits.
Abby Sunderland, 16, was on course to become the youngest solo circumnavigator when her Scott Jutson-designed Open 40, Wild Eyes, was caught in dangerous sea conditions and suffered numerous knockdowns. Sunderland’s family and support crew lost contact with her and later received word from Australian Search and Rescue that she had activated her emergency distress beacon. (EPIRB)
A French fishing vessel has changed its course and is en route to pick her up. According to Marianne Sunderland, at the time of this writing the vessel is approximately 13 hours away from her location.