This morning, The Sam Simon returned home to Sea Shepherd's Ship Operations Base in Williamstown, Victoria. After spending 81 days at sea and covering more than 15,000 nautical miles, the crew and Captain Adam Meyrson have arrived back safe and in good spirits after participating in the already successful Operation Relentless. They have witnessed both the beauty and the horror of the Southern Ocean, from the wonders of a giant Blue Whale to the entrails of a recently killed Minke Whale floating in the water. The Sam Simon and her crew have served valiantly as part of the only frontline defence against illegal whale slaughter.
Captain Adam Meyerson spoke about his experience on Operation Relentless, "It feels good to participate in such a successful and effective campaign. It has been an honour working with such dedicated crew of all our ships and with the other Captains, Peter Hammarstedt and Sid Chakravarty."
Jeff Hansen, Sea Shepherd Australia's Managing Director welcomed The Sam Simon home, saying, "The crew of The Sam Simon, under that command of Captain Adam Meyerson, have been outstanding in defence of the whales. Their hero's welcome was most deserved. They have unselfishly done their part in restoring the integrity of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary in
Sea Shepherd's tenth Antarctic Whale Defence Campaign, Operation Relentless. The Australian government over the years has consistently broken promises to the Australian public, however it has only been Sea Shepherd that have kept their promise to the whales, to the Australian public and the whale-loving people of the world."
The Bob Barker and The Steve Irwin continue to patrol the Southern Ocean, occupying the regions of good weather thereby denying entry to the Nisshin Maru. The Sea Shepherd conservation ships have succeeded in drawing two of three Japanese harpoon ships, the Yushin Maru No. 2 and the Yushin Maru No. 3, away from the factory ship leaving the whale poachers incapacitated and unable to kill whales for the remainder of the whaling season.
Sea Shepherd remains the only organisation on-guard in the Southern Ocean, committed to upholding the sanctity of the Whale Sanctuary,directly intervening against the illegal operations of the Japanese whale poachers.
photos: Adam Burling