Panama City Based Yacht Focus of Search in Tasman Sea in the South Pacific

By: Betsy Goldin Email
By: Betsy Goldin Email

Woodstock is very familiar with David and Rosemary Dyche.
They have had neighboring boat slips on Massalina Bayou for years.

"He's a deep sea diver and was raised on the water,” said Woodstock, a local boat owner. “He knows everything about navigating you could know. Probably more than most people, a lot more than I ever knew."

The Dyche's were active members of the local boating community.

"Normally it's all good weather,” said Woodstock. “Except for a few moments of sheer terror."

A few years ago, the Dyches' set out on a four year journey around the world.

They were joined by their 17-year-old son David, three other American friends and a British companion.

On June 3, a New Zealand meteorologist received a radio call from one of the Nina’s passengers, asking for help avoiding a storm in the Tasman Sea.

The storm carried wind gusts up to 68 miles an hour and 26-foot waves.He advised them go south and then ride it out.

That is the last time anyone communicated with the Nina.

June 14 New Zealand's Maritime Rescue Coordination Center began searching for the schooner.

Many of the men down at the marina who knew David Dyche said he was a very accomplished captain and they are not ready to give up hope.

"You always worry anytime you've got a vessel in a bad weather situation,” said Bill Llyod, the outgoing Panama City marina director, “But, you don't handle a boat the size of Nina unless you're an accomplished captain."

Authorities said they have "grave concerns" for the people aboard the schooner, which has been missing now for three weeks.


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