Today is one of my saddest days ever. Gino, one of my closest friends died. I met him through this project 7 years ago when he asked me if he could meet me on a beach in Alabama to take some footage of my training. Like many others, Gino volunteered his time and expertise, he created the first video we used to promote the project. During all those years he has been a real asset and bringing so much support that this project became his too. 6 months ago, Gino was in Japan with the rest of the crew and we were lucky to have him spend the first few days at sea with us.
In that short amount of time, the entire crew became a big fan of his, his love for others and enthusiasm was contagious.
Last week in our last email exchanges, I shared with him my deep disappointment about having to stop the world record attempt because of our equipment failure, but I let him know I was still fully dedicated to our mission and that I already had in mind an idea for spring 2019 our next expedition from Hawaii to California. Gino replied that he wanted to be part of it and on the boat with us, he couldn’t wait to see us on land to share what we experienced and talk about next spring.
I don’t realize the void that he has left behind since I am still accustomed to being isolated and I feel like I am in a bubble but once I will be on land, I know it is going to fill very real. I can’t imagine the pain his wife, family and friends are going through right know, my thoughts and prayers are with them, he touched so many lives and it has been a privilege to have shared those past 7 years of his life