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Donations Pour In For Families Of Lost Fishermen

Tens of thousands of pounds have been donated to a crowdfunding appeal set up by the daughter of Jersey skipper Michael Michieli for the families of his fishing crew.

Mr Michieli, known as Mick, was lost at sea when his trawler L'Ecume II collided with the Commodore Goodwill last Thursday morning (8 December).

An extensive two-day search and rescue operation was unable to find the three men.

Mick's daughter Rebecca has started an appeal for crewmen Larry Simyun and Jervis Baligat.

She had hoped to raise £3,000 to send to their families in the Philippines.

"Larry and Jervis would spend 9 months at a time working with my dad and sending home a good portion of the money they made to their families back home in the Philippines. Jervis had just been home for 3 months and was back for another 9 months as he was so fond of my dad and the work he was doing.

My family would like to do as much as we can for Larry and Jervis, we know money will never bring them back but we can at least take some of the stress away and allow them time to grieve without the burden of financial troubles."

 Jervis Baligat and Larry Simyun

Within 15 hours of the JustGiving page being shared, almost £36,000 had been donated.  Hundreds of islanders have left messages of condolences.

"My thoughts are with all the families involved. Well done to Rebecca who must be going through the worst pain herself but is thinking of others, what a wonderful person. My deepest sympathies."

"What a lovely thing you are doing at what is such a devastating time for you and your family. Our thoughts are with you, your family and friends and those of your Dad’s crew. Xx"

In a later post, Rebecca says is 'gobsmacked' by the response.

"We are utterly gobsmacked by the response so far and would like to thank everyone that has donated. Although our original target has been far exceeded we are still asking for people to donate as much or as little as they can. The more we can raise the more relief we can give to their families at such a heart-breaking time. We don’t want money to be something they have to be concerned about."

 L'Ecume II skipper Michael Michieli

Ports of Jersey has brought in a large offshore support vessel this weekend with an underwater robot that will make a detailed search of the collision site.

The location of L'Ecume II on the seabed was confirmed on Friday. 

The data collected will help to inform the next stage of the recovery phase of the operation.

"A maritime exclusion zone is in place for the area, and islanders are urged to respect this so the vessel’s crew can complete their work unimpeded."

Meanwhile, Condor says the Commodore Goodwill will return to service this evening (11 December)

"Following completion of a dive inspection and other checks in Jersey on Friday, Commodore Goodwill has been cleared to re-enter service.

The ship positioned to Portsmouth yesterday and will resume sailings to the Islands on Sunday evening, 11 December.

Condor continues to work closely with all authorities following the tragic incident last Thursday."

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