Providence Public Library welcomes award-winning author Michael Tougias for a book talk and signing for his novel A Storm Too Soon. 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. The program is free and open to the public.
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.
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.
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 lives in Massachusetts. Visit www.michaeltougias.com for more information.
Parking is available at the Providence Hilton Parking Garage, $3/3 hours. Bring your ticket with you for validation.
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