GOODBYE

Goodbye
One of the boats used to tender Caroline - the Dutch based Hosanna, disappeared without trace during February 1980. The Belgian crew and skipper were assumed lost at sea, although rumours persisted that the Hosanna was in Greece to be used as the tender for the Radio Mauritius project.
During force ten storms on 19th March, the anchor chain broke, and the Mi Amigo drifted for ten miles before running aground on the Long Sand Bank. The hull was damaged in the generator room, and water started to pour in. The DJ's packed the master tapes into waterproof bags. At 23:58, the Caroline theme was played for the last time, then Stevie Gordon announced "Due to severe weather conditions and the fact that we are shipping quite a lot of water, we're closing down and the crew are at this stage leaving the ship. Obviously we hope to be back with you as soon as possible, but we'd just like to assure you all on land that there's nothing to worry about. We're all quite safe. Just for the moment we'd like to say goodbye". Tom Anderson then continued "Yes it's not a very good occasion really. I have to hurry this, as the lifeboat is standing by. We're not leaving and disappearing, we're going onto the lifeboat hoping that the pumps can take it. If they can, we'll be back. If not, well I don't like to say it. I think we will be back one way or another." Stevie Gordon continued "Yes I think so, From all of us, for the moment goodbye and God bless". As the theme faded the 10 kilowatt transmitter was turned off.

Abandon ship
After standing by for three hours, the coxswain of the Sheerness lifeboat insisted that the crew leave the ship as parts of it were waist deep in water. In the early hours of 20th March 1980, the four crew - Tom Anderson (real name Timothy Lewis), Stevie Gordon (real name Nigel Latko), Nick Richards (real name Nigel Tibbles) and , Hans Verlaan (real name Ton Lathouwers, who went on to be the director of Sky Radio), reluctantly agreed to abandon ship and jump aboard the Sheerness lifeboat, Helen Turnbull. All the crews belongings had to be left behind. Due to the rough weather, it took over an hour to get everyone onto the lifeboat. Also rescued was the ships new canary - Wilson II.

Wilson

Wilson the canary

Not long afterwards, the Mi Amigo sank, as a position 51 degrees 35 minutes North, 01 degrees 17 minutes 20 seconds East. Only the mast remained visible above the water.

Hosannah

Hosanna

Mi Amigo

Stevie Gordon

Stevie Gordon

Mi Amigo sunk

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Mi Amigo sunk

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