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Beaumont-bound ship picks up 4 out of food on disabled rowboat - Tuesday, February 4, 2014

On Dec. 2, four Royal Air Force officers set out in a 24-foot rowboat from the Atlantic island of Tenerife near Spain, pulling for Antigua in the Caribbean as part of an 18-boat race called the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge.

The crew of Jane McIntosh, skipper; Warren Burns; Howard Raw; and Elizabeth Beauchamp - all experienced rowers - ran into the kind of trouble no mariner wants.

Electricity failed. The steering failed. High seas and high wind battered the boat. Food and water ran low and ran out. Then the worst happened. The rudder snapped,

That was 51 days into the voyage, on Jan. 23.

A distress call went out, picked up by the U.S. Coast Guard in Puerto Rico, about 1,500 miles distant. The rowboat crew was halfway through its race, but almost all done. Almost all out of luck.

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