Mysterious Disappearance of Patanela

On November 1988, Patanela, a 19-metre steel schooner was vanished without trace while approaching Sydney Harbour. She disappeared on a calm November night, within sight of the lights of Botany Bay. There was no mayday call, no distress flares sighted, no debris, and no bodies as evidence of her sinking. Nearly 20 years later, a ghostly 'message in a bottle' from Patanela's crew has been found on a beach in the Great Australian Bight by a beachcomber.

The 'message in a bottle' is written by John Blissett as he and three others sailed Patanela from Fremantle across the great Australian Bight on October 26, 1988. In faded blue handwriting inside a Bacardi bottle, it was found on a secluded beach near Eucla on the southern coast of Western Australia, by Esperance woman Sheryl Waideman on New Year’s Eve.



The note in a bottle offers a sailing holiday to the lucky finder.

"Hi there - out here in the lonely Southern Ocean and thought we would give away a free holiday in the Whitsunday Islands in north Queensland, Australia,'' John wrote.

"Our ship is travelling from Fremantle, Western Aust, to Queensland to work as a charter vessel.''

"See ya soon"
, it ends, signed John.

The note invites the finder to call one of a pair of phone numbers to claim the prize.

It gives Patanela's position as 34 degrees, 26 minutes, 20 seconds south, 129 degrees, 18 minutes, 54 seconds east in the Great Australia Bight.

That's south of Eucla - raising the possibility that the bottle drifted ashore and has sat undiscovered since.

Aboard Patanela, was John Blissett and his friend Michael Calvin, both from Taree, plus the skipper, Perth businessman Ken Jones and his wife Noreen. None have been sighted since Patanela departed Portland, Victoria, in early November.

An inquest which started in 1992 concluded that Patanela foundered in the early hours of November 8, 1988 some time after a final radio contact with Sydney Harbour. Nothing remained to explain the vessel’s fate.

The disappearance sparked wide speculation and a variety of conspiracy theories including claims of piracy and drug running. There is no evidence to either substantiate or disprove any such claims.

Sources:
http://www.perthnow.com.au/entertainment/sailor-note-washes-up-on-beach/story-e6frg30u-1111115404975

http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2008/02/08/1202234167137.html



Written By Tripzibit on May 17, 2016 | 05:01

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