PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Francis Saunders, 86, Jerry Willis, 71, and their dog Alphie arrived in Ponte Vedra Beach around midnight Tuesday, worn out and weathered but otherwise okay.
Investigators tell us Saunders and Willis set sail for the Bahamas from Port St. Lucie a week ago. But their boat lost power, and with no way to call for help, the pair was stranded at sea for seven days.
Neighbor Bob Wason saw the boat wash ashore and called 911. "I just tried to keep them calm," he said. "Tried to keep them on the boat until the fire rescue guys got here."
He said the sailors were tired, but in good spirits. "Nice people," said Wason. "He was just happy to be back on solid ground, I think, for a few hours."
Wason and another neighbor, Tom Heineken, noticed the boat taking a beating in this morning's wild weather and helped secure it on shore. They couldn't help but notice the stranded sailors knew what they were doing.
"Doesn't appear to be any hull breaches," said Heineken. "Nobody got hurt. So, it's sad to see it slooped like that on the shoreline. But seven days adrift, you can tell from all the rigging and stuff that's he's done there, that he was doing a good job."
Sea Tow says it will have to wait for Wednesday's high tide to move the boat. That should happen around 9 a.m.