Sailboat Family: San Diego Family Rescued


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In following their dream of sailing around the world, the Kaufmans made a valiant attempt and began their journey more than a year ago. However, things changed dramatically. Their trip was cut short and they recently made another attempt.

The Kaufmans lived in San Diego until moving to Mexico a year ago, where their youngest, Lyra was born. Eric Kaufman, a Navy veteran, works in the financial services industry and was fed up with life -as he blogged, done with the “house-car-job-complex with its nine-to-five office routine.” Charlotte Kaufman is a writer and former high school teacher.

As Eric explained on his blog about their first misadventure:

They pushed off March 8th, 2011, and after 50 days decided it best to dock the boat. There were many lessons for us about traveling as a family unit. Our first approach and style didn't work out. No worries, not every adventure works on the first try. We are expanding, exploring, and enjoying in other ways as we figure out how to proceed to see the world.

But they didn't give up - they took off again in March 20, 2014, on their vessel the 36-foot Rebel Heart, for the South Pacific and then New Zealand. After two-weeks of the journey they had to call for help. Their 1-year old daughter became seriously ill. On Thursday, they contacted the Coast Guard to report that they needed medical care for the younger girl, who had been sick for several days with a rash, fever and diarrhea and was not responding to medication. They were about 900 nautical miles off Cabo San Lucas.

Not only did they face their child getting sick, they also reported that their boat, the Rebel Heart, was taking on water when they tried to start the engine.

The Kaufman’s faced criticism for taking their young children on what was planned as a yearlong around-the-world sailing venture.

In response to the criticism, the Kaufman’s, once aboard the rescue ship, the Vandergrift, issued a statement defending their decision: “… when we departed on this journey more than a year ago, we were then and remain today confident that we prepared as well as any sailing crew would.”

They were rescued as their 36-foot sailboat boat, Rebel Heart, was drifting powerlessly about 1,000 miles from Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

Eric and Charlotte Kaufman and their two daughters, Lyra and 3-year-old Cora, disembarked the Vandergrift at the Naval Air Station North Island when the ship docked for other business. They immediately sought medical attention for their daughter, Lyra.

Image via YouTube