Nenad's Lun towed into land 

The Irish fishermen have spotted the boat 
and Irish Coast Guard towed it in. 
It was turned upside down, a hatch was broken, 
and it has been this way for a long time 
as there are sea incrustations growing within the boat. No trace of Nenad. 
Survival time at those temperatures is 
2 hours max... 

Nenad's boat - LUN. More images available here.

Wed, 21 Nov 2001 14:33:15 

To the family and friends of Dr. Belic,

On behalf of the Kilkee Community Inshore Rescue Service, I would like offer you our condolences on you tragic loss. Our Service is in the business of saving lives at sea and we are always very saddened when an accident on the Ocean results in such a tragic loss. The Kilkee Community Inshore Rescue Service (which although is affiliated to the Coastguard, is a voluntary organisation and not part of the Irish Coastguard) also played it's part in the recovery of the LUN. It was the first rescue vessel on the scene and was able to make a preliminary inspection of the LUN before the arrival of the Coastguard. During the journey back to Kilkee, The Kilkee Community Inshore Rescue Boat in conjunction with the divers from the Kilkee Sub Aqua Club was instrumental in resablishing the tow for the Coastguard as it parted on one ocassion at least. The latter part of the recovery was in total darkness, and as the crew members of the Kilkee Community Inshore Rescue Boat have vast local knowledge of the navigational hazards at the entrance to Kilkee Bay, they, after transporting the divers to shore, went back out to sea again to escort the Coastguard boat safely into the bay.

I personally would agree with Mr. Tom Byrne as would many other people living in the locality, that a memorial to Dr. Belic should be ercted in Kilkee. It was a very sad end to the fantastic dream of a man who was determined to make it come true.

Kindest Regards,
Kevin Heenan
Chairman, Kilkee Community Inshore Rescue Service.

REPORT from Ireland

Kenneth F.Crutchlow 

On Monday 19th November in response to a request from the Belic family I flew to Shannon Ireland to meet with Terry O'Sullivan Irish Cusoms & Excise officer who also has the position of "the receiver of wrecks". I met Mr. O'Sullivan in his office at Shannon airport and he told me that there was certain paper work that had to be completed before he could release any goods or the boat belong to Dr. Belic. The issues included posting an "official notice" so that if anyone who had a claim had a chance to file such a claim. Mr O, Sullivan was able to identify those that might have a valid claim starting with the crew of the Molly Bawn, then the Killkee divers who inspected the "LUN" at sea the Killkee rescue services, the driver of the 4 wheel drive that towed the "Lun" from the sea and the driver of the truck that took the boat to Kilrush Marina Co Clare. Mr O'Sullivan spent the whole of Monday morning on the phone making appointments so that we together could go to visit as many of those that might have a claim as possible. First together with Dermot McGrath (also Irish Customs) we went to visit John Hehir manager of Kilrush Marina, Mr O'Sullivan introduced me to John who asked that his personal condolences be passed on to the Belic family, he said there would be no claim from the Marina and offered to store the "LUN" (at no charge) until shipping arrangements could be made to ship her back to States. 

Steve Crowther, of "Freudian Sloop" a Solaris 36 saw me soaking up water with a sponge in an attempt I made to empty the "LUN" of water, Steve upon seeing me doing this said "I heard about the tragic loss I would like to volunteer to empty the boat out and give her a wash" I accepted this kind offer, and Steve spent several hours opening every hatch to be sure that all goods that were on the boat could be cataloged. He pumped out all the water and restored all the items ready for shipment, (except for all food stuffs, these items had to be taken away and destroyed as per Irish Agriculture requirements). 

Chis O'Flaheety 
Shannonside Supplies Ltd.in Kilrush 
The customs officers and I went into the office and asked for the manager, a gentleman sitting behind a desk looked quizzically at the 3 of us and asked what he could do to help. Mr. O'Sullivan explained that one of his trucks had been used late Friday night to bring the "LUN" from the seashore to Kilrush Marina, and asked if Shannonside Building supplies would be making a claim, it was obvious from his remarks that Mr O'Faheety had not been told of use of his truck to move the "LUN" he said smiling "thats our drivers for you, they run the place" he then said, "we will make no claim". 

Gerard Concannon and Tom Walsh, owners of the fishing boat Molly Bawn,Carrigaholt Co. Clare 
We 3 drove to the fishing dock to meet the Molly Bawn as she came in after a days fishing. Mr O'Sullivan asked Gerard and Tom if they would making a claim and "Gerard said "absolutely not," after a while I asked Gerard if he would tell me how it came they saw the LUN he said, "It was noon on Friday (17th November)we were fishing for white Pollack,we were close to shore, Tom spotted something in the water we marked the position and went around, we saw about 1 foot sticking out of the water it was a dark colour, and very hard to see, there was no way we could right the boat at sea. I saw the parachute anchor was shot, we towed her for 20mins when the line broke. I radioed the CoastGurard at Kilkee. At 5.00pm the Doolin Rescue CoastGuard came out and they put a line on "LUN" and towed her to shore.he added "The LUN" was on her way back out to sea when we spotted her, had we not seen her when we did I think she would of been lost forever". 

There are still some formalities to be completed before Mr O'Sullivan can release the boat but he did release to me "personal effects" of Dr. Belic's that have been shipped back to the States. 

As a personal comment I can say that everyone I met in Ireland the day I spent there, were most helpful and understanding. They had all heard of the search for Dr, Belic and that Adrian Belic on behalf of the family was searching for his father. The common wish that everyone I met was "may his soul rest in Peace" a sentiment I myself share.

november 17  02:00 GMT

Mr Terry O'Sullivan of the Irish Customs holds the official position of "Receiver of wrecks for Clare and Limerick Counties". It was in this capacity that Mr O'Sullivan went to Kilkee to take delivery of ocean rowing boat "LUN" after it was towed in first by the fishing boat Molly Bawn and then by Irish CoastGuard.
Mr. O'Sullivan told ORS this morning "I have removed all of Dr. Belics personal effects from the boat for safekeeping, including his passport, these items are now secure. The boat itself is intact except for some damage to one of the hatches". 

Kenneth F. Crutchlow 
ORS Executuve Director 

Update FRIDAY 16th november

Duty Officer at MRCC Irish CoastGuard Dublin said:

"at 20.32 the ocean rowboat "LUN" was brought ashore in Kilkee (Ireland), the official receiver of wrecks has been informed and is on his way to take official receipt of the boat. It will be up to him what happens to the boat after his inspection"

Irish CoastGuard Information Update 

Rowing boat LUN located off County Clare.                                                                          Dublin 16th November 2001 

The Irish Coast Guard has confirmed that a vessel found floating off the coast of County Clare is that of the misssing rowboat "LUN". The upturned vessel was discovererd by a fishing boat, the Molly Bawn, at 13:49 this afternoon approximatley 6.5 miles south west of Kilkee, a quarter mile offshore at Pouladay Rocks. 

Kilkee Comunity Inshore Rescue Services and the Irish Coast Guard's Doolin Unit are at the scene. A diving inspection of the vessal by Kilkee Sub-Aqua Club has established that there is no body on board. The vessel will now be towed to shore at Kilkee. 

The "LUN" is missing since Sunday evening 30th September last when an EPIRB (electronic position indicating radio beacon) was activated 215 nauticle miles west of Castletownbere in storm force 10 conditions. The rowing boat was manned by solo transatlantic rower Dr. Nenad Belic who had set out his lone voyage from Cape Cod, USA on May 11th last. 

An extensive search of the area by the UK and Irish Coast Guard, the RAF the Irish Aer Corps and private aircraft engagesd by Dr. Belics family failed to locate the vessel 

reprinted with permission of Tom Mc Loughlin 
Press officer Department of the Marine and Natural Resourses

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