April 23, 2002
When Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Star made a high-profile rescue of crew members from a crippled refueling tanker in the midst of the Pacific a couple of weeks ago, it brought onboard 12 men. One died, the rest, including the tanker’s captain, survived (and all are now in Hawaii and points beyond). But there was one poor soul forgotten in all the hooplah. The captain’s dog could be heard -- as reported by passengers who were on board -- barking frantically. While Norwegian Star maintains the captain was never told that a dog was left behind, Hawaii’s Humane Society has coordinated a $50,000 effort to rescue the pooch, a two-year old mixed breed terrier, who could be spotted running around on the deck. First effort: crew in a U.S. Coast Guard plane dropped their own lunches onto the deck of the Indonesian tanker, Insiko 1907, was disabled by a fire on March 13 and has been bobbing aimlessly around the Pacific (currently some 700 miles southwest of Hawaii). So far, however, the rescue has been anything but smooth for rescuers who spent all day Monday trying to capture “Forgea.” The dog, they say, is already freaked out by the frequent chopper fly-bys and, according to news reports, only responds to commands in Mandarin. The U.S. Coast Guard rescuers, not necessarily fluent in Mandarin, have learned that language’s word for “come” and have brought the pup’s favorite food -- peanut butter. Plus, Forgea has taken to going below-deck, a place that’s dangerous since the fire. The rescue effort is ongoing; we’ll let you know when it’s completed.