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Soldier in me helped fight nature's might: Smiling Abhilash Tomy thanks rescuers
 
Kochi, sep 26: Me and my boat were pitched against nature's might. I survived because of my sailing skills, the soldier...in me and my Naval training cut-in for that fight."

With these words, Indian Navy Commander Abhilash Tomy thanked those who rescued him from the high seas earlier this week.

Tomy, who was taking part in a circumnavigation tournament, was left stranded at sea in the southern Indian Ocean after his boat was caught in a storm. The storm wrecked the decorated Indian Navy officer's yacht -- the sailing vessel Thuriya -- and injured him so severely that he was unable to move.

Tomy survived on iced tea as an international mission was launched to rescue the him. Ships from the Indian Navy and the Royal Australian Navy raced to his location.

Ultimately, it was a French patrol boat that first reached the stranded Indian Navy officer. The French vessel rescued Tomy from his wrecked boat on Monday and transported him to Amsterdam Island, a French territory with basic medical facilities.

The Indian Navy's INS Satpura is on its way to the island in order to pick up the officer and take him to Mauritius for further medical attention.

Commander Abhilash Tomy today released a short statement via the Indian Navy. "The sea was unbelievably rough. Me & my boat Thuriya were pitched against the nature's might. I survived because of my sailing skills, the soldier bit in me and my Naval training cut-in for that fight," Tomy was quoted as saying by the Navy in a tweet.

The tweet was accompanied by a photo of a smiling Abhilash Tomy, who is the first Indian to circumnavigate the globe solo, unassisted and non-stop.Tomy's heroic feat earned him the Kirti Chakra, India's second highest gallantry award.The tweet was accompanied by a photo of a smiling Abhilash Tomy, who is the first Indian to circumnavigate the globe solo, unassisted and non-stop.

Tomy's heroic feat earned him the Kirti Chakra, India's second highest gallantry award.


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