Minnesota couple among passengers trapped on stranded Viking Sky cruise near Norway

The ship's engine died, leaving the cruise afloat in rough waters.
Author:
Publish date:

What was supposed to be a relaxing cruise from Berge, Norway, to southeast England instead became a weekend of trapped terror for a couple from northern Minnesota.

The Stare Tribune and KSTP report Judy Lemieux and Rodney Horgen, from the town of Deer River, were on the ill-fated Viking Sky cruise ship that became stranded in rough waters over the weekend.

The ship was off the coast of Norway when it abruptly lost power in a strong storm Saturday morning. Waves more than 20 feet high crashed into the liner and threw water onboard. Viral video shared from on board the ship showed it rocking back and forth, tossing passengers and furniture alike.

On the vessel were Lemieux and Horgen, wearing life jackets as the ship anchored in place in order to begin helicopter evacuations.

Because of the rough waters, rescuers couldn't reach the cruise ship by boat. Instead, they began removing passengers from the ship one by one via helicopter, hovering in place overhead as a line was dropped down, then lifting the single passenger through the air and into the chopper, as CBC news explains.

That effort started Saturday. The Minnesotans were among the 479 passengers rescued that way, Horgen told the Star Tribune.

By Sunday morning however, the ship's captain believed waters were calm enough to make it to a nearby port, CBS News reports. So with the aid of tugboats, the Viking cruise liner lifted anchor and slowly traveled to Molde, where it docked Sunday afternoon with the remaining 436 passengers and 458 crew members.

The Red Cross said that "bruising, broken bones and cuts" were the extent of the physical injuries.

Horgen told KSTP being on the ship was "very, very frightening."

Next Up

ambulance

Farmington man killed in rear-end crash

The man was stopped waiting to turn left when he was hit from behind.

vaccine, covid

More than half of Minnesota's 65+ population has received a vaccine dose

Gov. Tim Walz has stated that 70% of seniors will need to have received at least one vaccine does before the state can expand eligibility.

dan dulhane crop

Twin Cities radio personality Dan Culhane has died

He was battling multiple myeloma when he was diagnosed with COVID-19.

police tape, crime scene

Man found dead in Minneapolis from 'act of violence'

A woman was also fatally shot Sunday morning.

police lights

AMBER Alert: Missing 2-year-old found safe

The alert was issued Sunday evening.

Irv Cross

NFL Pro-Bowler, Twin Cities broadcaster Irv Cross dies at 81

Cross was a Pro Bowl cornerback, but his biggest impact was made after his career.

snow

Here's how much snow fell in Minnesota on Sunday

Some localized areas saw more than expected.

Lindsay Guentzel

For The Week: What's harder than making a meal plan? Sticking to it!

Lindsay Guentzel says you shouldn't give up on your meal planning routines.

Related

White Bear Lake couple missing in Italian cruise ship crash

Friends and neighbors say they've not heard from Gerald and Barbara Heil, who were aboard a cruise ship that crashed and tipped over off the Italian coast. At least five people were killed in the accident.

Bodies of White Bear Lake couple confirmed in cruise ship wreck

Authorities have recovered and identified the bodies of Jerry and Barbara Heil, who were among 30 people killed when a cruise ship capsized off the coast of Italy in January.

Decision looms on when to end cruise ship rescue

Rescuers are wrestling with the question of when they end the rescue and begin the recovery operation, which would allow them to start pumping fuel out of the ship and potentially avert an environmental disaster. About two dozen people, including a couple from White Bear Lake, are still missing after the cruise liner capsized off the coast of Italy.

Church holds vigil for White Bear Lake couple missing in cruise ship crash

The Church of St. Pius X is holding a 24-hour vigil for an elderly couple missing since Friday, when the cruise liner they were aboard capsized off the shore of Italy.

Singer Bret Michaels suing cruise promoter in Minnesota court

Michaels says he's owed $500,000 for a cruise ship performance. The cruise company says they asked the singer to knock off part of his fee because of weak ticket sales.