Queen Elizabeth 2-The Legend
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Time-Life Charter Oct 12/13, 1983

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Time-Life Charter Oct 12/13, 1983

Post  Brian_O on Fri Aug 06, 2010 8:35 pm

To celebrate their 60th Anniversary Time-Life had a 1-night charter from New York on the night of October 13-14, 1983. Among the invited guests were President Ronald Reagan and former Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter. QE2 was to sail at 5 pm and return in the morning.

Unfortunately QE2 was very late arriving in New York on Oct 13. On the westbound crossing from Southampton, one of the boilers had to be shut down for emergency repairs for approximately 36 hours on October 11-12. During this period QE2 was travelling at only 23 knots. The repairs were completed around 8 pm on Oct 11 and the boiler was relit. By the time she was back up to full speed it was 10 pm. To complicate matters, QE2 was travelling through thick fog for most of the 13th.

QE2 did not even dock at the NY Passenger Ship Terminal until 5 pm on October 13 and passengers had to wait until 7 pm to disembark. Fortunately for the passengers, Customs and Immigration officers boarded the ship with the pilot at the Ambrose light and all formalities were expedited and completed by the time QE2 docked. We only still to wait until all the baggage was unloaded but once we collected our bags we did not have to go through the normal customs check on the pier. Getting a taxi was "hell" that night. I finally got one at 9:15 pm just as the ship sailed. I checked into my NY hotel at 9:30 pm.

The next day I was at the pier (I was killing time before catching my overnight train to Montreal) and was told that because of the late arrival, all of the "presidential" guests had cancelled but the party had been otherwise successful. The "official" reason given for the late arrival was the fog and no mention of the boiler breakdown was made. However, the "fog" excuse was untrue. In fact, at noon on October 13, QE2 had been travelling at 29 knots despite the fog.

Last edited by Brian_O on Sat Aug 07, 2010 5:21 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Time-Life Charter Oct 12/13, 1983

Post  CAP on Sat Aug 07, 2010 4:35 am

Excellent update Brian.

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