Today the Cayman News Service reports that yesterday afternoon a seventy one year old cruise passenger was found dead in the water near an area referred to as the "Sand Bar." This is a popular location where tourists can swim in shallow water near stingrays.
Police have identified the cruise ship passenger as Mr. Samir Rizk of Raleigh, North Carolina.
According to this news source, a spokesperson for the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service said that just before 2:00 PM on December 6th, the local police police received a report that "a man had been found in the ocean, near to Coral Gardens, floating in the water by people who were on a boat at the Sand Bar."
The boaters lifted the man onto their vessel, but found he was unconscious and non-responsive to CPR.
The news source further reports that the Joint Marine Unit’s ‘Niven D’ went to the location and transported the man to the Yacht Club where paramedics were standing-by. He was then taken to the Cayman Islands Hospital in George Town, but was found to be dead on arrival.
A post mortem examination is scheduled to take place on this Friday, December 9th. There is no indication regarding the name of the cruise line or cruise ship on which the deceased passenger was sailing. It is also unknown whether the passenger was on an excursion, or a tender, or swimming or engaged in water sports.
If you were on the cruise and have information regarding this incident, please leave a comment below.
December 8, 2011 Update: The Raleigh News and Observer newspaper has an article where Mr. Rizk’s brother described him as an excellent swimmer and marathon runner, having completed a marathon just two months earlier. He questions how no one observed his brother in distress in such a popular and often crowded area.
Photo credit: photos4travel / @patrix99