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Pippin,

You're right, I hadn't even noticed that when I typed the transcript when I posted the recording of SOS on archive.org, but I did notice that Albion Lane the R/O of MARINE ELECTRIC/WOOH sent SOS before each call as he should.

I met the Chief Mate of MARINE ELECTRIC, Robert Cusick, of Portsmouth, NH twice in the basement of a Catholic Church where I attend Mass in Green Harbor (Marshfield), MA USA, it was at an event after Mass, perhaps the first communion of my third child, Marisa, I was standing in back of him and something within me was "disturbed," he also turned around aware that I was looking at him with puzzlement, we introduced each other and within about 30 seconds we discovered what we had in common. He was involved with the SOS of WOOH and I was involved with the SOS of PJTA. He told me an amazing story of how the ship rolled over when he was about to get into the lifeboat, having very much his wits about him, when the ship rolled over, he understood that what he moments ago knew was "up towards the sky" was now "down towards the sea bottom", he swam - completely underwater - towards the edge of the ship then swam "downward" which actually was upward, and broke surface. He moments later bumped his head against the lifeboat WOOH had lost while attempting to launch it, and he tried to get into it, but as most can surmise, grabbing ahold of the gunnel of a lifeboat when in the water and attempting to get into it while immersed in the sea is a task that takes the strength of a body builder. It's nearly impossible, and it was impossible for Chief Mate Bob Cusick. He must have been knocked unconscious by the hull of the lifeboat banging against his head, because the next thing he remembers is that he was inside the lifeboat something his wife, Bea, considered a miracle. Bea
Cusick had also made Bob an unwashed wool hat, which because it still had the lanolin in the wool, probably kept his head warm, and him alive while he was in the cold Atlantic Ocean. I also met him again in the same place, nearly playing out the same scenario, something attracted me so much to him that I asked him who he was, and it was much faster this time to recognize what we had in common.

From: Captain Robert M. Cusick, Survivor and Hero of SS Marine Electric, Dies Peacefully in NH, Family Says
Against the advice of many friends and colleagues, Captain Cusick testified at a US Marine Board of Investigation and detailed how inspectors and company officials overlooked numerous holes in the hatches, decks and hull of the Marine Electric, an old, dilapidated World War II era tanker converted to coal carrier, according to Robert R. Frump, former maritime writer for The Philadelphia Inquirer and author of a book about the wreck entitled "Until the Sea Shall Free Them."

The reforms that Captain Cusick’s efforts helped establish included the creation of the now famous US Coast Guard Rescue Swimmers service, the scrapping of 70 old unsafe ships and the requirement of survival suits aboard North Atlantic run vessels," Mr. Frump said.

“Bob Cusick was a brave and humble everyman hero who spoke up at a time when he easily could have remained silent,” said Mr. Frump. “His testimony was crucial to ending a bad system that had sent dozens of old and unsafe ships out to sea and seamen to their deaths.”

By most standards of survival and hypothermia, Captain Cusick, the chief mate of the SS Marine Electric, ought to have perished with dozens of others in February 1983. The SS Marine Electric foundered during a severe storm in February 1983, spilling 34 men into icy cold water where they faced sixty foot waves and below-freezing winds.

Life expectancy in such conditions is as little as 15 minutes, but Captain Cusick, wo was 59 at the time, managed to find a half-submerged lifeboat and as he felt himself fading sang out a song written by Canadian folk singer Stan Rogers with the lines, “Rise again, rise again! Like the Mary Ellen Carter, rise again!”
I found a YouTube Video I did not know about it until I searched for the video of Bob Cusick singing "Rise Again, Rise Again, Like the Mary Ellen Carter, Rise Again," but this video seems even better.

That video is here: Stan Rogers, Bob Cusick, and the Miracle of the Marine Electric

The section about the song C/M Cusick sang to himself is here: Section about "Mary Ellen Carter."

Here is the video that has the song performed by Stan Rogers with a live introduction by Bob Cusick.

God bless, you Bob for what you did for the safety of the U.S. Merchant Marine, you and USCG Captain Dominic Calicchio who rejoined the USCG active duty after serving in USCG Reserve while actively sailing as a Captain in US Merchant Marine, you might enjoy reading this article about USCG Captain Dom Calicchio - and if you notice he retired after the Marine Safety Board hearing and "wonder," so did I and I have reason to understand that Dom was unpopular for what he did in the USCG, but that this was later revised as history proved him a hero. I am very glad they consider him a hero.

73
DR

David J. Ring, Jr.
N1EA
 
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