James Michael Grimes Wiki
James Michael Grimes Biography
James Michael Grimes, 28, says he survived by eating bamboo and can see the funny side of the life-threatening encounter after he plunged into the sea on November 23.
He waded in the water for nearly 20 hours after falling off the Carnival Valor cruise ship, and her sister reported that she disappeared nearly 12 hours after she first disappeared while traveling with 18 of her family members.
The two were last seen together at a bar, and her sister said she got up to go to the bathroom before disappearing.
Grimes, who had only been aboard the boat for a day, said he believes the fall knocked him out and he is lucky to be alive after being rescued by the Coast Guard on Nov. 24.
James Michael Grimes, 28, says he survived by eating bamboo and can see the funny side of his life-threatening encounter after he plunged into the icy sea.
Speaking to GMA, he said: ‘The next thing I know, I’ve regained consciousness. He was in the water with no ship in sight.
“I felt like I was given a chance at that moment…you’re alive for a reason…that fall could have killed me, but I felt like from that moment on, I was trying to stay positive.”
And you know that when you’re here, you’re still alive for a reason. So all you have to do now is swim and survive. I was hoping… that they would start looking for me… that they would find me eventually.
“My worst fear is drowning and that was something I didn’t want to have to face.
I wanted to see my family and I was determined to get out of there, you know. I never accepted that this is it. This is going to be the end of my life.”
She had been spending Thanksgiving on the five-day cruise with 18 members of his family, including her parents and his sister, while the ship was traveling to Cozumel, Mexico, when she fell overboard.
Grimes claims that while he wasn’t “drunk,” he and his sister had enjoyed a few drinks after he won an air guitar competition.
When asked if he had been drinking, he denied having “tons” of drinks and said he “really couldn’t” tell how much he had consumed.
The outdoorsman also claims that he was forced to fend off a creature with a fin, which he initially thought was a shark, as he floated in the waters after falling off the boat.
He added: ‘I thought it was a shark. I mean, it was swimming in one direction and I looked around, I saw it out of the corner of my eye and it came at me really fast and it sank and I could see it and it wasn’t a shark.
“But it had more like a flat mouth and it came up and hit one of my legs and I kicked it with the other leg. He scared me not knowing what it was or at that moment how big it was. All I could see was a fin.
He floated past a stick. It looked like bamboo so I started eating it and actually I won’t say it tasted good but it gave me some kind of taste in my mouth that wasn’t salty water.
“As it started to get back to night, the water started to get cold, at which point I thought, you know, how much longer do I have to be here?
“You know, the fall didn’t kill me, you know, the sea creatures didn’t eat me, I felt like I was meant to get out of there.”
Rescuers finally managed to get him out of the water using a basket suspended from a helicopter in the dark at 8:25 p.m.
The Coast Guard said he was suffering from hypothermia and dehydration.
The miraculous rescue came after an oil tanker spotted the man thrashing in the waters that same night.
In a statement, the Coast Guard added: “We greatly appreciate everyone’s efforts, especially the US Coast Guard and the sailor who saw the guest in the water.”
Cruise ships have safety barriers in all public areas that are regulated to US Coast Guard standards that prevent a guest from falling.
‘Guests should never get on the rails. The only way to go overboard is to purposely climb over the safety barriers.”
Carnival Valor said in a statement: “Carnival Valor retraced its route to support search and rescue, but the ship has now been released by the United States Coast Guard and will continue on its way to Cozumel.
“Carnival’s care team is providing support to the families of the missing guest who sailed with him and remain on board.”