British Tourist Swims For It—And Almost Dies—As Cruise Ship Departs Without Her

by Cheryl Rosen
British Tourist Swims For It—And Almost Dies—As Cruise Ship Departs Without Her

Photo: Buonasera

Editor's Note: This story originally ran in March 2016, but when we ran it again in our Sunday "Lighter Side" issue last week, it once again made our Top Hits of the Week list!

File under “you can’t make this stuff up.” 

A British tourist was pulled from the Atlantic after trying to swim to the Marco Polo cruise ship as it pulled away from the coast of Madeira. 

Susan Brown, 65, is believed to have reconsidered her decision to leave the 32-night Cruise & Maritime Voyages' sailing after an argument with her husband, apparently believing he had returned to the ship without her. 

Mrs. Brown was pulled out of the water by fishermen who heard her calls for help. She suffered hypothermia and was close to drowning after swimming for four hours in the dark, covering less than half a mile. She credited her handbag with keeping her afloat.  

Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV) said it helped the couple arrange flights home after they left the ship, after more than a month on board together, “at their request and for personal reasons” on Saturday.  
 
Marco Polo is sailing to Lisbon and then to Bristol, where it will arrive on Thursday. 

Mr. Brown, meanwhile, reportedly had boarded an Easyjet flight home. 

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