48 Hours Live to Tell: Black Wave
Amelia Silverwood: I was so over being on the boat with my family.
Jack Silverwood: You can't spend a lot of time with them or else you'll get really annoying.
Amelia: I felt really frustrated almost all the time. All I want to do is go home.
Jean Silverwood: There were many challenges living on board a boat the size of an RV with your husband and four kids. My kids would fight a lot; John and I would fight a lot. We'd all be fighting and yelling at each other.
Ben Silverwood: I was going crazy because I had nothing to do; wake up, eat breakfast, study a little bit, then sit around. I was really mad about it.
Jean: Ben would disappear off the boat and come back hours later and we'd be worried about where he went, but he'd have to get away from us.
Ben: There's a couple points where I lost my temper, to say the least. I threw stuff around the cabin, kicked the door open, ran all around the boat screaming and yelling and ripped a couple posters down my walls. I was starting to think that I'd be out there forever. I wouldn't ever go back home.
The Night Of The Wreck
Jean: Ben was crying. He was standing over John, apologizing to him. "Dad, I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry for the horrible things I did during the trip. You know, I'm so sorry. I love you."
Ben: I didn't want him to feel guilty that he'd brought me on that boat. I just wanted to comfort him.
Amelia: My dad would, you know, he'd bear the pain, but sometimes he'd scream.
Jean: It was horrible to watch somebody that you love go through that.
Amelia: He prayed for us the whole time; he never was praying for himself.
Jean: "Please help my wife and my kids survive this." He then asked me to bring the kids over to him. And he was kinda saying goodbye to them.
Amelia: He'd telling us that he's about to die.
Ben: I was pretty sure he was gonna die.
Camille Silverwood: I was sad to see if my dad was really gonna die or not or if we were gonna make it out.
Jean: My youngest daughter, Camille said, "I just want daddy to stop hurting." And an emotion came over me that was just unbelievable - to have my sweet daughter saying this to me.
I just thought in my mind, "Well we're not gonna say goodbye. We're gonna get you off the boat, we're gonna get ourselves off the boat. We're gonna try to do whatever we can."
Coast Guard Station, Alameda, Calif.
Ernie Delli Gatti, Search and Rescue Controller, U.S. Coast Guard: The first emergency beacon signal that came in was approximately 10 p.m. Pacific Standard Time and it was registered to the Silverwoods who lived in San Diego, Calif.
We did not know their location. We did not know if they were in San Diego or where in the world that they were.
The first thing we did here is that we attempted to contact their home telephone number.
And when that failed, we started talking to the family members. They had told us that they had left Tahiti at least three to five days prior. They went ahead and told us that both John and Jean were experienced sailors and John would not turn on the beacon unless he was in some sort of emergency situation.
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