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Old 23-01-2012, 21:14   #1
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John Batchelor - Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

NASSAU, Bahamas - Police in the Bahamas are looking for a 72-year-old Canadian whose sailboat was found ransacked and abandoned off the island of Grand Bahama.

The Royal Bahamas Police Force is distributing flyers on John Batchelor of Ontario.

Spokeswoman Loretta Mackey said today that police are still treating his disappearance as a missing persons case.

Police boarded Batchelor's nine-metre sailboat last week after it had been sitting for several days with no sign of the owner.

The boat appeared to have been ransacked but there was no one on board but a malnourished dog.

The dinghy was attached but a swim ladder was down.

John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

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Hopefully he is okay.
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Old 23-01-2012, 21:35   #2
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

This doesn't sound good.

I have to admit that I have a hard time visualizing myself sailing singlehanded to a lot of destinations. There are many places I don't mind anchoring with the full crew of Exit Only, but I would not want to be there all by myself.

I hope it turns out well for this sailor.
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Old 23-01-2012, 21:46   #3
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

I agree with you but I would not have thought the Bahamas as one of those places.
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Old 23-01-2012, 21:53   #4
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

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I agree with you but I would not have thought the Bahamas as one of those places.
I have anchored in some lonely places in the Bahamas. The southern Bahamas are outback and beyond. Once you get away from the popular anchorages, things quickly feel remote. You are really on your own when nobody is around for ten miles.
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Old 24-01-2012, 05:36   #5
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

I met John in Hatchet Bay in Eleuthera in 2010. I think his boat, the Joy B, was an Alberg 30. I think he cruises every year, but not sure if he goes all the way back to Lake Ontario each year. Perhaps someone who knows him better will have some insight. Despite the report that he "frequents the West End," unless he was having some boat issues, I can't see anyone anchoring between memory rock and sandy cay for any length of time on purpose. My guess is that he was on his way to the Abacos.John...we wish you the best.
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Old 24-01-2012, 10:29   #6
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Sending good thoughts out to John and his family that he is found soon, safe and in good health.SC
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Old 24-01-2012, 14:41   #7
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

Didn't really know him well but had spoken to him on occasion. We saw him last year passing through Telegraph Narrows at Deseronto, he was travelling with another boat on which the skipper was also single handing. He kept his boat at Waupoos I think, was on the hard there 3 or 4 years ago when we first spoke to him. Was a nice fellow with a nice friendly pup. A tragedy.
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Old 24-01-2012, 14:53   #8
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

And more:

The Tribune
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Old 24-01-2012, 19:24   #9
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

I know/knew John very well. We were neighbours one year he spent the winter here in Ontario. Surprisingly he turned his Alberg into a pilot house Alberg and it worked.
This was his 18th trip to the Bahamas. John, if he had a breath in his body would not have left that dog ( Dingo) to starve. He was a prudent knowledgable sailor. Yes he returned to Lake Ontario every summer. A mutual friend says he had cleared in some time ago at Green Turtle Cay. this means his boat was in the wrong place, in the wrong direction. He would have been headed further south in day hops. green turtle to little abaco, to royal island to Hatchet Bay Eleuthera and then hop his way to Georgetown. He enjoyed racing there.
It would be nice if we could bring the dog home. there is a home waiting for Dingo with people he is familiar with.
I doubt I will see my friend again. My heart is sore today.
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Old 24-01-2012, 19:34   #10
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

Good grief, this is a sad story. While it sounds like it won't have a happy ending, I hope we can at least learn of this man's fate.
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Old 24-01-2012, 19:56   #11
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

I hope we find out as well. We did some sailing with when we were in the Bahamas as well as here on Lake Ontario.
I have been trying to contact sailors I know are in the Islands to find out if anyone had recent contact. If I do find out what happened, I will post it here.
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Old 24-01-2012, 20:59   #12
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

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I hope we find out as well. We did some sailing with when we were in the Bahamas as well as here on Lake Ontario.
I have been trying to contact sailors I know are in the Islands to find out if anyone had recent contact. If I do find out what happened, I will post it here.
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Hi Witchcraft,

My name's Carys Mills, I'm a reporter with the Globe and Mail, and I'm working on a story about John. I tried to send you a private message but the forum wouldn't let me. I saw your posts about him and I was hoping to talk to you about John's life here in Ontario. So far I've managed to talk to Waterway Guide who posted in the forum about meeting him briefly.

Hope you're doing okay. Is there a phone number I could reach you at tomorrow (Wednesday)? You can reply here or to my work email at cmills@globeandmail.com.

Best,
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Old 25-01-2012, 06:02   #13
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

Thanks Witchcraft, and Carys.
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Old 25-01-2012, 06:34   #14
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

Carys, I will email you as suggested.
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Old 25-01-2012, 06:37   #15
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Re: John Batchelor: Canadian Sailor Missing In Bahamas

I updated the Bahamas Police this morning. There are no new developments. I asked about the current log book, and they indicated that they couldn't find a current book, but found one with the last entry they found was in December. He said he saw only the Canadian flag, and no courtesy or quarantine flag. They are checking now to confirm if and where/when he checked in at Green Turtle or elsewhere. Let's hope for the best.
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