Captain Kelly on board his trimaran, SURVIVAL, had grounded in a storm off Young Island.
He had called the St Vincent Coast Guard which had responded by pulling him off the reef,
depositing him onto another reef close to Sunset Shores Hotel, dropping his anchor over the side without ensuring that it was secured to the yacht,
and then disappearing. Captain Kelly, aboard the yacht with his wife,
had eventually managed to have SURVIVAL pulled by two tractors onto the beach adjacent to Buehler's Yachts,
and the latter had promptly (and, one might think, rather heartlessly) submitted an invoice for $EC 7,200 for their services.
Letter from Narendra Sethia
Barefoot Yacht Charters,
St Vincent & The Grenadines, West Indies, August 2000
SURVIVAL was prohibited from leaving her mornings for a whole summer, with temperatures around 45° Celsius, clouds of fierce mosquitoes,
and alligators which prohibited bathing and kept him awake by banging their tails on the hulls of the under-wings.
The harbour wall was twelve feet higher than SURVIVAL'S deck and infested with rats.
From this berth, 800 yards from the Bolivian border, it was also common to see packets of cocaine float by
disguised as, or in, floating plants, dead snakes, cows, alligators and dogs.
Kelly remained on board, revolver at the ready. At one stage, a deadly Caninana snake was placed in his dinghy by an unknown person
and on another occasion he was attacked by a pack of dogs whilst heading ashore.
Finally, after many letters to government officials and international ecological bodies, he was released.
Mr Kelly said about his release:
"I was advised to leave the area as soon as possible, but before I did so I was visited by a group of local forest police
who told me that my denunciation of the tugboats had triggered the foundation of a "Clean Pantanal" project and had given them a voice.
So, I am happy to say that the local Indians and animals can now drink the water..."
Another of Captain Kelly's successful denunciations concerned the use of jet skis.
Whilst moored on the river Jaguaro, SURVIVAL was almost hit by one.
So Kelly immediately painted a notice reading "Jet skis are the enemies of nature, peace and tranquillity",
and advising that they stay clear of the yacht which was to be visited by 700 schoolchildren that week.
"Jet skis," he says, "scare all the rare and near-extinct birds from their nests and eggs -- they never return,
for fear of those noisy, polluting, motorised mosquitoes".
The local jet-skiers, however, were rich and powerful, and advised the Commodore of the local yacht club to tell him to leave, which Kelly did.
But he went straight to the Uruguayan side of Lake Mirin where he staged an exhibition, giving talks at the local people's hall.
This led to the local residents putting their own notice up at the lakeside.
Captain Kelly was then interviewed for the Uruguayan TV and press, telling them that the jet ski is the environmental Public Enemy No.1.
He convinced the Uruguayan marine authorities who have now banned jet skis.
Before he left the Matto Grosso, Kelly was able meet a previously unknown tribe which speaks the Dravidian Language,
thought to be the same as that of the Druids of Britain. A 73-year old woman doctor who has spent her life with them taught him the language.
In April and May of this year, Captain Kelly visited Antigua where SURVIVAL was opened to the public and the Captain gave talks at local schools.
From Antigua, he headed south to St Vincent, after which he planned to take SURVIVAL back to London where, at St Catharine's dock,
she would be moored and opened to the public as a floating museum with displays of indigenous artifacts. SURVIVAL'S accident may shatter these plans.
Captain Kelly, his wife and SURVIVAL are currently marooned on the beach adjacent to Buehler's Yachts in St Vincent,
with approximately $US 20,000 of damage to the yacht.
Barefoot Yacht Charters has so far raised $EC 6,000 to assist with repairs,
and plans are afoot to stage an exhibition and possibly an auction in order to raise additional funds to enable the yacht to be re-floated.
Contributions to assist Captain KELLY in the repair of SURVIVAL, the world's only floating Ecological and Amerindian museum,
would be greatly appreciated and may be sent to Barefoot Yacht Charters.
Statement by The Hon Gaston Browne,
Minister of Planning, Implementation and Public Service Affairs,
Government of Antigua and Barbuda, May 2000
"I wish, on behalf of my Ministry and my Government,
to support the nomination of Captain Kelly as a leading environmentalist,
conservationist and extraordinary champion of the Amerindian tribes of the Amazon,
for the Global 500 Environmental Award and trust that he will be consequently rewarded
for his unstinting sacrifices of over 30 years unique service for mankind".