Please bring my Father home
$5,555 raised
11% of $50k goal
40 contributors
179 Days running

When what seemed like a scary movie became a reality.On October 24, 2015, my Dad was making his annual trip with his boat, S/V Cimarron from Maine to St John. David Pontius was a crew member that was referred to my father but whom my father did not know. He joined aboard the Cimarron at their stop in North Carolina. After leaving NC and making their way to St John, at about 1am, Mr. Pontius became disoriented and violently attacked my father, strangled him, punched him in the face and threatened the lives of the crew on the boat before finally climbing over the railing and jumping overboard never to be seen again.

The indictment alleges that my Dad, as a Captain, failed to stop to render assistance of a man overboard, despite the threat to the lives of the other members of his crew.

My Dad protected his crew!

After the incident, the US Coast Guard drafted an investigative summary that did not conclude that Richard Smith as the Captain violated any duties to David Pontious. Moreover the statement said that due to the conditions of the sea they were in, the evening hour, etc that the Captain and crew did what they could to look for Mr. Pontius.

The indictment that has now been brought forth, fails to mention how this man threatened the lives of my father and the other members of the boat, and that it was after being physically violent and delusional that he jumped overboard completely on his own. It fails to mention that this man was on anti-depressants; taking 7 plus pills a day which he hid from my Father...

Everyone on the boat was absolutely terrified. It was a terrifying situation being out at sea in the middle of nowhere at 1am thinking you are about to die as this man attacks you for no reason. My Dad literally saw death flash before his eyes and sadly the crew was too terrified for their life to do anything. My Father saw virtually no way out of this situation with a very large man attacking him.

As his daughter, it makes me so sick to even think about that fear that my father faced leading up to this terrible event.

My father has been sailing for over 45 years, over 70 offshore trips without incidence or any tarnishes and a stellar reputation from all that board his boat.

Now, at 66 years old, he could spend his life in a St. Thomas prison, on an island that is so foreign and far away from home, where sadly, we his family, have no ability to see him. Since the indictment, my dad’s life and business have been on hold. If he goes to prison, his business will close and his life as we know it, will end. I cannot even allow myself to go there, for the sake of my children, my brother or my mother. He wouldn’t be able to see his grandchildren grow who continue to ask for him daily.When all is said and done, my father’s legal bills will most likely surpass $100,000 not to mention the cost of living away from home while not being allowed to work. I am hoping to raise as much as I possibly can, to help cover some of these costs.

His case goes to trial in January 2019 so I’m hoping to raise this money by the end of the year.Please help me! My Father had his life threatened by this absolutely crazy man and because he chose the safety of others, to protect those who needed it, he has been charged with a crime he in no way committed.

All of my father’s efforts were simply trying to save the crew’s and his own life and return home. We ask that you help so that he can be with his children and grandkids and so he can watch them grow up.If you would like more information, you can reach me at I thank you from the bottom of my heart on behalf of my brother, my mother and my 4 children as well as all of Richards loved ones. Any help is appreciated more than you know. -Ashley Rose

Activity highlights See all41
Follow this campaign to receive updates by email.
Recent contributions