Today, the body of Costa crew member Russel Rebello was found in the salvaged wreck of the Costa Concordia. His remains were the last to be removed from the ill-fated cruise ship.
Mr. Rebello was known to his fellow crew members as a warm, friendly and always-smiling young man. He was last seen going back into the sinking ship to rescue passengers.
Tragedies like the Costa Concordia define a person. When disaster strikes, will the person shirk their responsibilities and run like a coward? Or will they rise to the occasion and help others?
Maritime lore and tradition say that the captain always goes down with the ship. That’s not exactly true, but the saying reinforces the notion that the captain must be the last person on the ship. He is required by maritime regulations to be aboard the ship in order to supervise the orderly evacuation of all aboard, before he exits.
Francisco Schettino fled the Concordia like a scared rat. He does not deserve even to be called a captain.
When the Concordia hit the rocks and eventually slipped into the sea, it was Mr. Rebello who acted as the true master of the vessel. He put the safety and well being of the guests before himself. He honored the maritime tradition of a captain staying on the ship and placing himself in harm’s way to help others.
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