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Tragedy at sea re-lived

Published: 8:26PM Monday March 09, 2009

Judith Sleavin can never forget the events of 13 years ago but it has taken her this long to even talk publicly about it.

Judith's husband, Mike and kids, Ben and Annie were approaching the top of the North Island on a world cruise on their yacht Melinda Lee when, in the early morning darkness, the yacht was sliced apart by a Korean container ship.

Judith knew immediately there was no hope for their son Ben who was sleeping below where the impact occurred.

Their life raft, radio, all their carefully prepared safety equipment gone and Judith, Mike and Annie clung to a partially inflated dinghy, confident help would soon be on the way.

But the container ship which wasn't running its lights or radar and sailed on and made no call for help.

Judith speaks to Close Up about losing her family.