Thousands of people embark on cruises each year to enjoy vacations, holidays, and honeymoons with family and friends. But not everyone returns home from these trips.
Several people have vanished aboard cruise liners, leaving their friends and families heartbroken and confused. Here are 10 times that people mysteriously disappeared from cruise ships.
10 Amy Lynn Bradley
While on a family cruise to the Caribbean, Amy Lynn Bradley mysteriously vanished from the Royal Caribbean International Cruise Line’s Rhapsody of the Seas. The American woman was only 23 years old when she disappeared from the vessel on March 24, 1998.
Early that morning, Bradley went missing. She had danced all night with members of Rhapsody’s band, Blue Orchid. She left the band around 1:00 AM, and her father noticed her sleeping on their cabin balcony around 5:30 AM.
Her dad returned to the balcony at 6:00 AM to check on Amy, but she was no longer there. Her father reported her missing to the authorities on the cruise line, and the ship docked at Curacao, Antilles.
The cruise line and the Netherlands Antilles Coast Guard spent days looking for Amy, but the search ceased on March 29. There have been many theories about her disappearance, but none have been proven to be true.
9 George Allen Smith IV
In July 2005, George Allen Smith IV and his wife, Jennifer, were celebrating their two-week-long honeymoon on a cruise from Greece to Turkey when he mysteriously disappeared. It is believed that he went overboard due to an accident on the ship.
Smith vanished after a long night of drinking and gambling at the ship’s casino. A passenger aboard Brilliance of the Seas claimed that he heard men arguing in the Smiths’ room. Another passenger heard furniture being moved around inside the room, and Jennifer was later found passed out in a hallway.
Jennifer claimed that she did not remember much from the previous night, and nobody ever admitted to knowing anything about Smith’s disappearance. Some theories claimed that he was thrown overboard by the men with whom he was arguing. Others believe that he accidentally fell into the water after drinking too much.
In 2015, the FBI closed their investigation into the disappearance of Smith. They said that his death could have resulted from an accident, but his family was never convinced. They believe he was murdered.
8 Rebecca Coriam
In 2010, Rebecca Coriam started working for Disney Cruise Line and spent months visiting several ports in the Bahamas. On March 22, 2011, while working on the Disney Wonder, Coriam disappeared.
She was last seen on CCTV footage in the crew’s lounge talking on an internal phone. She was wearing men’s clothing and seemed visibly distressed. After hanging up the phone, she walked away, never to be seen again.
When she failed to report for her shift, crew members started looking for Coriam. After they were unsuccessful, the United States Coast Guard and the Mexican Navy were alerted and joined the search. But her body was never found.
Some theories claim that she was swept overboard while at the pool. Others say that she jumped or fell from the deck. Her family hasn’t received any answers as to why or how she went missing while aboard the cruise ship.
7 Daniel Kueblboeck
Daniel Kueblboeck, a German pop star, was famous for a short time on the talent show Germany Seeks the Superstar. He disappeared after reportedly either jumping or falling from a cruise ship. The 33-year-old was aboard an AIDA Cruises ship for a holiday from Hamburg to New York when he went missing. The cruise ship was off the coast of Canada when the incident occurred.
Witnesses aboard the ship claim they saw someone jump overboard around 6:00 AM the day he went missing. A month earlier, Daniel had posted on Facebook about being bullied as a kid, how it had affected him deeply, and that he still did not feel better mentally or physically.
Authorities believe that he jumped into the water on purpose. The search for his body was called off after four days.
6 John Halford
On April 6, 2011, John Halford went missing while aboard Thomson Cruise’s Thomson Spirit. The 63-year-old man disappeared while on a holiday cruise in Egypt. Authorities believe that Halford went missing sometime between 11:45 PM on April 6 and 7:30 AM on April 7. According to authorities, he was last seen at the ship’s bar drinking cocktails.
Halford’s suitcases were found sitting outside his cabin’s door, which is required for guests on the last night of the cruise. The luggage contained gifts that he had purchased for his wife and children. When the cruise ship docked the next morning, he was not in his room or anywhere else on the ship. His body was never found.
5 Christopher Caldwell
Christopher Caldwell and his fiancee, Crystal Tinder, went on a Carnival cruise in July 2004 to Mexico. Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Fascination was near Miami on the final night of the trip when Caldwell disappeared.
That last evening, he and his fiancee had gone to dinner with some friends they met on the cruise. They all had a few drinks and decided to hit up some of the nightclubs after dinner.
Crystal then decided to head in for the night, but Caldwell chose to stay in the casino for a while. He told her he would be back shortly. But he never returned to their cabin.
Surveillance video showed Caldwell leaving the casino at 2:17 AM, and one crew member admitted that a bartender had seen Caldwell on the promenade deck around 3:30 AM. The bartender said that Caldwell had appeared to be very drunk, but the barkeep did not help his customer back to his room.
Caldwell was never seen again. It was believed that he had fallen overboard, and the coast guard spent 36 hours looking for his body. They eventually called off the search, and Caldwell was presumed to be dead.
4 Fariba Amani
Fariba Amani was enjoying a cruise with her boyfriend, Ramiz Golshani, when she mysteriously vanished from the Bahamas Celebration cruise. The 47-year-old mother of two from Canada disappeared on February 29, 2012, somewhere between the Bahamas and Florida.
Ramiz last saw her at the ship’s gift shop, and then he headed to the casino by himself. When he returned to their cabin, Fariba was not there. He eventually fell asleep. When Ramiz woke up, Fariba still had not returned. He spent an hour searching for her on the ship.
Ramiz alerted the crew about her disappearance shortly after arriving at port. The coast guard began an 84-hour search that spanned 25,900 square kilometers (10,000 mi2), but they were unable to find Fariba.
Police and the FBI also failed to find any evidence or trace of her during their investigation on the ship. The whereabouts of Fariba remain unknown, but her family suspects that Ramiz may have had something to do with her disappearance.
3 Annette Mizener
In December 2004, 37-year-old Annette Mizener embarked on a nine-day cruise with her parents and daughter. On the final day of the trip, she disappeared from Carnival’s ship The Pride.
She was last seen when the ship was around 48 kilometers (30 mi) off the coast of Ensenada, Mexico. Authorities believe that she fell or was pushed overboard, but some strange facts emerged about her vanishing.
Mizener’s beaded purse was found with beads missing near a smoking deck. But her family said she would have stayed away from there. A passenger stated that a nearby camera for that deck was covered, so there was no footage of her.
The captain of the ship waited about three hours before finally turning around and dropping rescue boats to search for Mizener. However, he only did this because he was ordered to do so by the coast guard. Her family believes foul play was involved, but her case remains unsolved.
2 Merrian Carver
Merrian Carver’s disappearance from a cruise ship around Alaska in 2004 is one of the more absurd stories. The 40-year-old woman vanished from a Royal Caribbean ship that nobody in her family even knew she had boarded.
On the second day of the cruise, a cabin attendant noticed that the bed had not been used and reported it to the boss. The supervisor said, “Just forget it, and do your job.” The attendant did as she was told, although nobody ever used the room. Carver was never seen again.
After the ship docked, her possessions were packed away. The authorities weren’t notified that she was missing. In fact, the police only learned of her disappearance when her father filed a missing person’s report days later. As her family hadn’t known that Carver was on the ship, the police needed time to trace her there.
The cruise line took three more days to confirm to authorities that she had been on the vessel, which was 26 days after she disappeared. By that time, the trail had gone cold.
1 Hue Pham And Hue Tran
In 2005, Hue Pham, 71, and Hue Tran, 67, took a seven-night Mother’s Day cruise in the Caribbean with their daughter and granddaughter. The couple, who had been married for 49 years, mysteriously vanished while on the Carnival Cruise Line ship.
On May 12, a ship employee found two passports, two pairs of flip-flops, two driver’s licenses, medication, and a wallet containing cash and credit cards. The passports belonged to Hue Pham and Hue Tran.
A full search and rescue mission began after family members realized the couple was missing, but the mission failed to find anyone. Authorities believe that the couple committed suicide by jumping into the sea together. Their son, Michael Pham, testified before Congress to urge tougher regulation of safety practices on cruise lines.
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