Skeleton Crew Sailing
Skeleton Crew Sailing is a living, evolving story about a Navy Veteran
and his friend breaking from a near decade of confinement by embarking on an
Odyssey to circumnavigate South America. Partnered with the non-profit MISSION 22, our
aim is to expose the lack of any transitionary program for veterans
in their return to civilian life.
Setting sail from Pensacola, Florida, Taylor and Stephen crossed the Gulf of Mexico down to the Yucatán Peninsula. Having sidelined down the eastern coast of Central America and passed through the Panama Canal, Taylor and Stephen will continue down the spine of South America, traverse Cape Horn, and climb their way back up the eastern coast to the Caribbean.
The estimated duration of this journey is nine to twelve months, leaving plenty of time to not only port in every country, but explore their respective cultures, documenting each with video and writing while interviewing select dignitaries along the way. Rounding Cape Horn, meanwhile, will be an adventure in itself. Widely referenced as the Mount Everest of sailing, Cape Horn is notorious for icebergs, roaring winds (sometimes exceeding 150mph), cyclonic williwaws, and treacherous waters that can produce swells of over 100ft.
Beyond the appeal of adventure and exploration, Taylor and Stephen are embarking on their journey in association with Mission 22 to spread awareness of veteran suicides. Over 20 veterans take their own lives every day. That makes the process of assimilating back into civilian life more lethal than the war itself. Mission 22 is a charity organization on a mission to win the war at home by spreading awareness of suicide rates and sponsoring treatment programs for veterans suffering from PTSD and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). While working to increase their visibility, Taylor and Stephen will also be contributing 20% of all merchandise and monetized revenue toward the various treatment programs that Mission 22 provide for veterans.
You can read more about Mission 22 and their mission HERE.
CAPTAIN TAYLOR GRIEGER
Taylor is a former United States Navy Rescue Swimmer with tours in Guam, Japan, Brunei, Australia, Philippines, Hong Kong, South Korea and many of the outlying islands sitting on the Marianas Trench. His sailing experience consists of round trips out of San Diego, California; Sydney Harbor, Australia; Hong Kong, China; and Iwakuni, Japan. His destination sailing journeys have consisted of trips from Guam to Siapan, and from Tampa across the Gulf of Mexico to Corpus Christi. He is a licensed United States Coast Guard Captain and holds Coastal Navigation certificates from the American Sailing Association. From years of first hand experience responding to disasters on the Pacific ocean to sailing tourists around the Gulf of Mexico, Captain Taylor Grieger is one of very few mariners competent enough to navigate Cape Horn.
First Mate Stephen J O'shea
After graduating Summa Cum Laude from Texas A&M University, Stephen took a yearlong trek around the United States utilizing only a compass and topographic map for navigation. Stephen then went on to receive a studentship at the University of Strathclyde in Scotland to study a PhD in creative writing. He lived for three years in Glasgow writing a collection of short stories while teaching creative writing to undergraduates. Since leaving Scotland, Stephen has completed his first book, From the Land of Genesis: a short story cycle based on interviews with combat veterans about their experiences reassimilating to civilian life. Stephen's sailing experience includes navigating the fjords and bays of western Scotland, as well as trips in the Gulf of Mexico.
You can find Stephen's website HERE