A Captain’s Duty recounts the harrowing real-life adventure of Richard Phillips and the events that led to his capture by Somali pirates. The ship’s story, including Phillips’ capture and the ransom negotiations, is harrowing and includes tragic losses in both human lives and property. The true story of Captain Richard Phillips as he was held hostage by Somali pirates. This international bestseller has been made into a successful film starring Tom Hanks and Barkhad Abdi.
In April 2009, the most significant act of piracy in modern times unfolded – the hijacking of a US-flagged cargo ship carrying food and agricultural materials for the World Food Program. Six Somali pirates fired AK47s at Richard Phillips, the ship’s captain. He was beaten by his captors and locked alone in a room. When he realized he had been left behind with no way to signal nearby warships, Captain Phillips made a desperate plan to outwit his captives – leading to an eight-day standoff between three men in a tiny lifeboat.
The Maersk, Alabama was hijacked by Somali pirates on 8 April 2009. The ship’s captain, Richard Phillips, tackled the gunmen head-on and eventually surrendered himself instead of letting them take his crew hostage. He told them, “I’m the captain of this ship, and I’m asking you now: please don’t hurt anybody.” It was an act of selfless heroism that inspired us all, but one man made the ultimate sacrifice in exchange for those lives: Richard Phillips became a hostage to save the lives of his crew members.
About A Captain’s Duty Book
‘It never ends like this….’
Richard Phillips knew of the dangers. He’d said as much in an email to his wife.
And yet 8 April 2009 began as just another ordinary day for the fifty-three-year-old captain of the Maersk Alabama, the US-flagged cargo ship carrying food and agricultural materials for the World Food Program. Ordinary, that is until – some two hundred miles off the Horn of Africa – Somali pirates, armed with AK47s, attacked and boarded the freighter . . .
But the pirates didn’t expect the crew to fight back. And they didn’t plan on the captain offering himself as a hostage in place of his ship and crew. And ultimately, they didn’t bargain on the plain-talking, tough-as-nails officer they took as their prisoner. A tense five-day stand-off followed, and an escalating battle of wills would end in a daring and deadly high-seas rescue.
Captain Phillips’ astonishing story is of an ordinary man who did what he saw as his duty and in so doing, became a hero.