Overboard Incident

Lynsay O’Brien

Rest in Peace, Our Dear Lynsey…
“The Shiniest Star in the Sky”

We boarded the ship, Costa Magica (owned by Carnival Cruise Lines), with our four children on the 2nd of January 2006. On the 3rd night of the cruise, our beloved 15-year old daughter, Lynsey, fell overboard and has not been found.

This was supposed to be a cruise of a lifetime… with old friends and their families, but instead, it turned out to be the worst nightmare imaginable. You do not expect to go on a cruise with four children and return with only three.

Lynsey had been served a lethal amount of alcohol, while onboard the ship, as did her 16-year old friend. We had agreed to let Lynsey leave our sight for one hour. When she did not return within that time frame, we began looking for her; however, her older sister, Kelley, was the one who found her. Lynsey was at a bar, which was hidden away on another deck. A middle-aged barman appeared to be engaging her in conversation, while other barmen looked on.

When we finally got Lynsey back into our company, we gave her a large bottle of water to drink. She appeared very quiet, but unfortunately (for us), at that point, we did not realize just how intoxicated she was. (We later found out that the barman, in question, had given Lynsey and her 16-year old friend a couple of drinks “on the house” and also allowed them to smoke cigarettes). Upon learning this, we contacted the Supervisor and bitterly complained that our daughter and her 16-year old friend had been served alcohol.

Shortly thereafter, we took Lynsey to her room. Sandra, my wife, told her that we would speak with her in the morning. I kissed Lynsey “goodnight”, and told her that I loved her… but within a few minutes of leaving her room, my youngest daughter, Imelda, began frantically screaming that Lynsey had fallen overboard.

Lynsey went overboard at approximately 2:00am. It took approximately 15 minutes before the ship began to slow down. By that time, it had travelled quite a distance from the original location where Lynsey had fallen. There was no effort, whatsoever, on behalf of the ship to lower any lifeboats to search for our baby, Lynsey.

There were media reports, indicating that helicopters and lifeboats were searching for Lynsey; but we never saw any evidence of this. The only immediate rescue attempt made was life buoys, tossed by a young man, who had seen Lynsey fall into the ocean.

There are many unanswered questions, but my family and I will not rest until we seek justice for Lynsey!

Our family unit is broken…. We are ALL broken!

We love you dearly, Lynsey, and we know you are watching and smiling down upon us from heaven.

We are desperately seeking the identity of the young gentleman, who cared enough to throw the life buoys into the water, in an attempt to save our baby, Lynsey. We would truly like to speak with you and sincerely thank you for your caring actions and efforts. PLEASE…Contact us.

If you have any information, regarding this, please contact International Cruise Victims.