Graham Rankine was going about his business on Wednesday night when he said he received a phone call from a friend in Honduras, who told him he had found two men drifting on the sea near Honduras from the Cayman Islands.
After speaking with his friend, Honduras resident Leonard Holder, Mr. Rankine said he found out that the men were the two boaters who have reportedly been missing at sea since Oct. 25.
He said the men were Caymanian Thomas Owen Robert Bush – who Mr. Rankine used to coach in football – and a Jamaican national whose name he does not know.
Mr. Rankine said he does not know how the men became lost in the first place, but that Mr. Holder told him that the rainy conditions might have saved their lives by providing drinking water and shelter from the sun.
“[Mr. Bush] is in good health, but has a lot of blisters,” he said.
Mr. Rankine said the men were on the island of Guanaja, and that Honduras authorities have been notified about their presence.
Police in Cayman confirmed that they had received reports that 30-year-old Mr. Bush, of North Side, had been found alive by a Honduran fishing vessel.
“The RCIPS is in the course of confirming these reports with the family of Mr. Bush and the Honduran authorities; it remains officially unconfirmed at this time,” the police statement said.
The Royal Cayman Islands Police Service initially made on announcement on Nov. 2 that the two men were missing after going out to sea on Oct. 25.
“Mr. Bush was last seen in the Windsor Park area wearing jean shorts and T-shirt, and was said to have left for sea in a 28ft canoe,” police said at the time. “The police are currently trying to determine a possible location of the vessel in which Mr. Bush departed in order to deploy further search and rescue efforts.”
On Nov. 16, the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service sent out another announcement on the matter, stating that the search for the men was ongoing.
“Early last week, the U.S. Coast Guard was notified and then dispatched an aircraft to search an area based on calculations of Bush’s last known location. However, there were no sightings,” that announcement stated. “The USCG has also alerted their assets in the Caribbean as well as ships in our area.”