One of the most thrilling maritime disaster stories we’ve ever read is The Finest Hours: The True Story of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Most Daring Sea Rescue. The book was co-written by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman and published by Simon & Schuster, and the film rights were subsequently acquired by Walt Disney Pictures.
New England was hit by a savage nor’easter in 1952, and in the early hours of Monday, February 18, two oil tankers, the Pendleton and the Fort Mercer, came to grief in the freezing waters off Cape Cod. Constructed with “dirty steel,” and ill prepared to withstand the mountainous waves, both ships broke in half and left their crews in a desperate fight for survival.
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