Costa Concordia - July 5, 1999
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Costa Concordia Passenger, July 5, 1999
James Scavone, 22 from Connecticut was on a Carnival Cruise Line's Destiny voyage with his best friend, Jeff, and twelve members of Jeff's family. They boarded the ship on the afternoon of July 4, 1999. All fourteen of them had dinner that night at 2000 hours. About 2200 hours, they visited the casino. They then went to the Point After disco club. They had several drinks at the club and danced with several other passengers.
At about 0030 hours, Jim told the boys he was going to the men's room. Jim was never seen again!
When the boys returned to the cabin at about 0300 hours, they decided that Jim must have met someone and would return in the morning. They woke up about 1000 hours and still had not heard from him. They went to the ship authorities and asked to have Jim paged over the intercom. Jim never answered the page.
The ship notified the U.S. Coast Guard sometime in the afternoon of July 5, 1999. After we were notified, the ship assured us that they would find him. They said they would do a cabin-by-cabin search during the dinner hour. At 2200 hours, they told us that they still had not found him.
The following morning, I called the FBI in New Haven, Connecticut. The ship docked in San Juan on the afternoon of July 6, 1999. The FBI asked permission and was granted the request to board the ship. The FBI interviewed a number of people, including the young men that were with Jim the previous night.
They left the ship and called me at 10pm that night. They told me that there was no evidence of foul play, and therefore, they concluded that he must have fallen overboard.
A few weeks later, I asked for and was sent the itemized bill of my son's sail card, which is used to pay for anything on the ship and also serves as a key to enter your cabin. The bill indicated that Jim did not go anywhere and buy anything after he left the Point After disco at about 0030 hours on July 5, 1999, and he never reentered his cabin.
In February 2006, after viewing The Primetime television show, a woman from South Carolina recognized Jim as the person that was missing from the cruise ship "Destiny' that she was on six years before.
She related to us that on the morning of July 5, 1999, the phone in her cabin rang and she heard a young man say, "Help me, I can't get out of here". Then, she heard a scream, what sounded like furniture being thrown around the room, and some scuffling. Then, the phone went dead.
She was interviewed by the ship, as well as the FBI, which is confirmed by the FBI report. She told us that later in the week she asked about my son, and the ship told her that he had been engaged prior the trip, and his fiancee had broken up with him. They said he was despondent and probably committed suicide.
This is a total fabrication. She contacted Carnival Cruise's corporate offices after the trip, in the hopes of being able to contact us. Carnival Cruise told her they had no record of anyone disappearing from the "Destiny" on July 5, 1999.
My son, Jim, had just turned twenty-two less than three weeks before this trip. We have never seen or heard from him since the morning of July 4, 1999. No one should go on a cruise and vanish, but many people do.