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Power of WE Podcast Episode 10: She Fell Overboard and into the Adriatic Sea for Eighteen Hours. This is Simone's Story of Survival, Love, Miracles, Strength and Resilience

Woman sitting on the beach looking at the ocean

You can know someone and have no idea that they've gone through something absolutely unheard of and life altering. That's the story of today's guest, Simone Krasan. I met Simone in February of 2009 when she joined iGnite and since then she's become more than a client, she's a friend. She's also a wife, mother, fellow iGnite Renew Year Retreat enthusiast, and new author. It's the subject of her book, that we talk about in today's podcast.

In June 1991 when Simone was a 21-year-old college student, traveling abroad with her best friend Tina between junior and senior year, she fell off a night ferry, and was lost in the Adriatic Sea for over 18 hours.

I can't even write that without getting chills. Deep, dark water is one of my greatest fears, yet Simone says for the many hours she was in the water, she often felt peace - the water was calm, the night was clear, and the saline helped to keep her afloat. A fellow traveler she'd met only the day before and instantly connected with, Larry, jumped in when Simone went overboard, and they spent the night encouraging each other, talking and making plans to someday marry once they were rescued. But by the time the sun came up, finally warming her, Simone was alone.

"In order to honor his death, I had to live. I was given this beautiful gift of living and I was NOT doing that at all!" - Simone

a map from Italy to Corfu

Simone's ferry was traveling between Brindisi and Corfu - the bottom route.

Alternating between swimming and floating, consciousness and unconsciousness, Simone drifted for the entire day. Under the Mediterranean summer sun, she was exhausted, dehydrated, and as the sun set, her body was beginning to shut down. It was truly divine intervention that kept her alive until 7:10pm on June 19 when 9 Austrians, themselves off course and behind schedule, found her in the 9-foot swells of an incoming storm.

men in swim trunks on a sail boat

The Austrian Crew of the Sir Thomas, who Simone calls her saviors.

Simone's Story of Survival & Divine Intervention

By most any account, Simone should not have survived, but she did. She drifted more than 50 miles over 18 hours without water or food, but miracles kept happening.

  1. The sea was incredibly calm and the weather was mild right up until the hour before she was rescued.

  2. Her rescuers should not have been where they were, when they were to find her - they themselves were 4 days off course.

  3. Once rescued, she had limited time to get medical help, the Austrians were directed to bring her to Corfu 4 hours away, but a Greek man who happened to speak German, overheard the distress call and rerouted the Austrians to a closer, small island 2 hours away.

  4. There happened to be a visiting doctor on the island who saw Simone immediately, recognized her body was failing, and did exactly the right thing to keep her going until she could be moved to a hospital on the mainland.

  5. Her friend Tina was tenacious, insisting to the ferry captain, port authorities and finally to the U.S. Embassy, that something was terribly wrong and she needed help.

The grass isn't greener on the other side, the grass is greener where you water it.” – Simone

Being rescued and surviving her ordeal wasn't the end of Simone's story. Once she was back in the states, she was a celebrity of sorts, but when school started again in the Fall, the reality of what she'd been through became clear and she had to figure out how to cope with the depression, survivor's guilt, and horror of her experience.

You can read Simone's Member Spotlight HERE, and listen to my unforgettable conversation with her on the Power of We Podcast on Spotify HERE or YouTube below.

men standing around a woman and smiling

In 2017, Simone reunited with many of the Austrians who saved her.

Toasting with her saviors and her still-best-friend, Tina in Austria.

Be the First to Get Simone's Book

Simone is wrapping up her book and it will soon be available to purchase! To be in the know, you can follow her on her Instagram as well as on her website:

More About Simone

After sharing her survival story, Simone answered some of my rapid fire questions, such as:

Self-Care Practice

  1. Plenty of good sleep

  2. 10 minutes outside in the morning, no phone, to set my intentions for the day.

  3. iGnite whenever possible.

Women exercising and smiling with invitation to join them!

Favorite Concert, Advice to 20 Year Old Self, and Book

facts about water survival and the Adriatic Sea

Power of WE Podcasts To Inspire Joy, Resilience and Gratitude


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