Cruise Bruise Investigates: Hero Michael Groves saves Seabourn Spirit cruise ship passengers in the most violent pirate attack on a #cruise ship ten years ago today. Seabourn Spirit attacked with Ak47s and rocket-propelled grenades.
Seabourn Spirit was nearly boarded by pirates and no doubt a hostage situation would have played out just as it did with the Le Ponant, only with passengers involved if not for the bravery of Michael Groves. Michael Groves was working as a security officer aboard Seabourn Spirit.
For his heroic efforts, Groves received the Queen’s Gallantry Medal from the Queen herself at Buckingham Palace on May 16, 2007. Men are not labeled “heroes” and given medals for bravery by the Queen for ‘minor events’. That was the first clue lots of information was missing about this incident, information Queen Elizabeth II had at hand.
Mr Groves, a 42-year-old crew member who was a former UK policeman, dodged the pirate’s small arms fire and rocket-launched grenades, and used a fire hose to try to force the pirates away from the cruise ship. Two grenades were fired into the ship, but Mr Groves fought off the pirates and prevented them from boarding. When he was honored by the Queen for his bravery, Mr Groves said: “As soon as I went on the deck I came under automatic fire. A rocket grenade blew me off my feet.”