JG - Fishers of men. Treasure Beach fishermen save Tranquility Bay teen fugitives.
Fishers of men
Treasure Beach fishermen save Tranquility Bay teen fugitives
published: Sunday July 24, 2005
IAN ALLEN/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER
Fishermen Kenroy 'Kendog' Trenchfield (left) and 'Blousa' Moxam who found the two boys who ran away from the Tranquility Bay Home.
Claude Mills, Staff Reporter
The two American teenage males who ran away from Tranquility Bay last week endured a harrowing four days on the run in the rocky hillsides of Treasure Beach before they were rescued by two fishermen, 'Blousa' Moxam and Kenroy Trenchfield.
The story behind the rescue itself is a remarkable one, one that speaks to the faith, belief and conviction of Tranquility Bay counsellors Jeanne Bowser and Judy Holt. They believed the two fishermen from Treasure Beach could be heroes.
"We were getting really worried by Wednesday, so we contacted 'Blousa' to find the boys. He has a nose for it because some time ago, he had rescued a girl at sea which I knew about, and our faith was justified. I told him he's the dream team now. Because of him, at least three young people are alive today, that girl and those two boys," Ms. Holt said.
Once contacted, the men bought $3,000 worth of gasolene, and then set out into the choppy waters to begin the search. A few hours later, at 2:30 p.m., the fishermen got lucky.
"We found them bottomside Kaiser. We had spent a lot of time searching for them, had some false alarms, and when I finally saw them, I said, 'I see one white boy, I see two white boys'. If yu eva see where they were, I can't even figure out how dem could hitch up on that side of a steep, little hill;" 'Blousa' Moxam said.
"We had to take our time to reverse the boat towards the hill; we had to be careful because of the rocks and the heavy water."
The counsellor Jeanne who had gone with the two fishermen then jumped into the water, and eventually coaxed the young men to jump from the hillside cave into the water.
"We pull them in after that. We were so happy but we couldn't even get to call the father of one of the boys to tell them the good news because we had no cellular signal from the boat. But I was grateful that they were alive," 'Blousa' Moxam said.
Ravenous, the young men, dug into provisions the fishermen had brought for them.
"We knew they were hungry, and quick quick time, they polished off one bread and a half gallon of water. Dem just wax off the food still," Kenroy 'Kendog' Trenchfield said chuckling.
The Sunday Gleaner news team coincidentally met the men in a bar at Treasure Beach where they were having a drink to celebrate finding the young boys.
"I am very proud of them. Remember, there were private investigators, and people from all over the island who were looking for them for days. But time was running out, so on a hunch, we went down that morning to 'Blousa' and his friend, and I said: What we want for you to do is be a hero and find those babies for me, and 'Blousa' said 'OK Judy'. We just knew the right fishermen. We knew exactly who we were going to. It was a miracle. I cry every time I tell the story," Ms. Holt said.
The teens were taken to a physician who found that "one child was completely dehydrated".
Asked to explain why the teens had tried to escape, Ms. Holt said:
"One of the boys was just new. He had arrived two weeks ago and was a little bit nervous about his new surroundings. The other guy, he had just been dropped a level, and was perhaps depressed. The two of them talked about it, heard about the hurricane, and decided to escape because no one would be able to find them in the hurricane."
She continued: "They left from school through a sinkhole. Their intent was to go to Kaiser and find the big boats, but they had no food or water. They had to drink water off the rocks from rain that had fallen. All they had taken with them was a can of sardines and bread. They were scared to death and swore they were going to die."
The teen who was recently admitted to the behaviour modification centre will be going home with his parents when they arrive in the island tomorrow, July 25, while the parents of the other child are already in Jamaica. Last Thursday, the two fishermen had breakfast with the father of one of the boys, and were told of the US$1,000 reward for finding the boys.
"I am glad this story had a happy ending," Ms. Holt said.