A guest post from Rob, a dear friend and lover of Kyle’s. A tattoo manifesto.

YES AND is a mantra for embracing the now and creating the future; for moving deeper into life; for being an active participant; for flowing with what the universe has to show you and reaching out to join it.

YES can be enthusiasm: YES! I want this! I love this! This is perfect.
YES can be acceptance: yes. This is happening. This is now. This is part of everything. This is.

AND can be the next step.  The moving forward.
AND can be adding on, expanding. More. Deeper.

It’s how we move through the world, step by step, first with a YES, and then following it up with AND. Again and again, until we get to where we are, and find ourselves saying again, YES AND.

Kyle talks about the “abundance of the universe”. Trusting that your needs will be met, to not be shy about visualizing what you want, that there is enough for everyone.  There is enough love and energy and positivity in the world that everyone can have the amazing life they want (which, turns out, is the same as the magical life we each deserve).  Just as a mother’s love is limitless, the universe has enough starlight and mystery to fuel each and every one of our dreams and hopes and loves.

I first heard Kyle talk about YES AND while reading Bossypants by Tina Fey. (I JUST finished reading it myself. It’s great!)  She talks about how “Yes, And” is a “rule of improv” that asks performers to agree with the situation and add something to it. “Start with a YES and see where that takes you.”

Saying YES has taken Kyle everywhere he has ever gone, and in those places he found us and inspired us to be part of his AND.  And he carries us with him just as we carry him with us.

While in New Zealand, Kyle and Weston were planning on getting YES AND tattoos; a first step in a campaign to come back to the State and convince everyone else to get the same tattoo. Weston was the first to get his. Much like the ones I got, Weston’s tattoos are on his feet.

Since the Nina has gone missing, I’ve been having many conversations with friends who are close to Kyle.  One of those conversations took place when I drove to the Oregon coast to hike Saddle Mountain with Kat and Dan one day. (side note: Dan is the wonderfully sincere man who introduced me to Kyle at a 4th of July camping getaway, and Kat is one of Kyle’s absolute best friends who I had the pleasure of meeting for the first time at a rundown Mexican restaurant in Crescent City, CA when I drove to pick them up at the end of their impromptu Oregon coast bike trip adventure.  Needless to say, a shining example of the beautiful people Kyle attracts.)  As we hiked we told some of our favorite stories about Kyle and shared a giant bag of wine (‘cause I mean, duh, right?).  At the top of the mountain, after reading some Mary Oliver out loud, watching the ocean and hoopin and hollerin, I was sharing Kyle’s thoughts on YES AND and talking about Weston’s tattoo.

By the time we got back to the car it was decided we would call our (and Kyle’s) friend Kati to set up a tattoo appointment. And, as these things go, Kati had been talking to Weston while we were out hiking.  In fact they were talking about his YES AND tattoo. What was obvious, was now becoming inevitable.

I’m now part of a community of excited, positive, involved, happy, present, self-determining people dedicated to commit to Kyle’s message of saying YES to living a true life AND doing something with it.

With this in mind, and the Nina still not found, I am working at saying YES, this is happening, AND I know in my heart Kyle will be safe.
YES there is sadness and confusion AND there is love and comfort.
YES there is joy and laughter AND there is loss and longing.
YES there is me AND there is us.
YES there is us AND there is we.
YES there is this AND there is this.
YES there is love AND there is love.


I’m back and updating

I’ve just come back from a good visit to San Diego with my sister Kacie and our cousin Crystal. It was what we all needed–to be together and to have Kyle’s presence come to us in lovely, sometimes overwhelming and not so subtle, but mostly spirited and fun ways. For me, it was a chance to step away from being a conduit of information between the media, family and friends, and this blog. I’m back at it, though, as recent developments are calling for our next steps. What happens now is unclear, but I will attempt to give you thoughts from people closest to the information: Laz and Libby in NZ (Evi’s family), the sailing community, and family members of Nina.

Since I’m uploading all of this in one shot, it’s probably best to skim over the Search Summary and Text Message before reading further.

Laz and Libby were allowed to sit in on the meeting with RCCNZ on July 5 when the decision was made to suspend the active search. RCCNZ has been mostly forthright in sharing their information and answering questions. That Laz and Libby were allowed in on this important process is a testament to how accommodating and transparent they have been. I do want to give them credit for their efforts. Laz was also able to confirm that the search efforts conducted by NZ were nearly the same that AU reported they would have done. From Libby’s (Evi’s niece) report on July 2 with RCCNZ:

We inquired with NZ RCC about what, if anything Australian RCC could bring to the table. We learned that Australian RCC has been privy to the search and independently created their own search patterns using drift modeling (they have the same technology as NZ). The two are almost exactly the same, which means Australia would have conducted the same searches.

Hearing this information gave me confidence in RCCNZ; their actions throughout gave me reassurance that the efforts were in capable hands. There have been missteps and mistakes in the search, which I believe they should be dually criticized for (see letter from Curly, Evi’s partner). However, pressuring them to be accountable is going to be more effective than scathing criticism and blame. (For the record, I believe Curly is performing the former quite well with this letter and I appreciate that it was sent out. And Evi’s family, friends, and lovers are all rock stars in their own right.)

That being said, none of us are ready to give up. I don’t think many miracles happen on their own or without intervention. We can believe the crew of Nina is fighting the sea, using everything they have to make it to land. And maybe they will eventually find it, or maybe they will be found because another vessel or plane finally stumbles upon them.

It has happened before:

I won’t hang my hopes on the same kind of miracle happening again, but here’s why I continue to have strength: 1) The prayers, love, and energy from around the world. They’re powerful and mean something about all of us and every individual on Nina. 2) The comments on the sailing forum from seasoned sailors continue to be hopeful. You’ve got to take comments like these with a grain of salt, but boy when you need to hear someone that’s been on open water say something optimistic and comforting, these folks can do it. 3) On the ground in NZ, the sailing community continues to also be optimistic. They also believe that now is not the time to stop searching.

There are several speculations about what has/is happening ranging from Nina sunk in a catastrophic event on June 4 and life rafts were or were not able to be used, to the Nina survived the storm but is severely damaged or not and just slowly drifting along. They could have ability to communicate, or all three devices have failed them for another myriad of reasons. The fact that absolutely no debris has been discovered in the searches could be a good sign, or a sign that the Nina went down quick. Even the condition of Nina at the time they set sail has been debated.

As debatable as the conditions Nina and crew are in, is what to do about it. Even though RCCNZ’s search efforts have been commendable, there’s certainly agreement that search efforts shouldn’t be over. There is some talk and planning among family members to fund searches privately. And there are some efforts to call upon our elected officials to get the US Navy involved or pressure RCCNZ for further searching. I’m not yet sure what’s the best course of action. Probably both, but we need more information before those actions are a go. Also, getting this story to stay in the media is important to keeping it on the minds of sailors in the area. These are the people out on the water every day, the last thing we want to do is for them to think we’ve lost hope so they stop watching for Nina or her crew.

From here, there are two important things we need. 1) Hope and perseverance . The prayers, love, good energy, and/or whatever else you are putting out there for the crew, Kyle, and family is needed. Stranger or not, we all need you. And I love each and every one of you for it. 2) Don’t let Kyle and the Nina slip away. Please keep following this blog or the media, the forums, or facebook (#Universetokbj). There may be soon a call to action, but most important, this story isn’t over.

Love and Light,


PS…And for your enjoyment, a picture! Mom has been hooking up with all sorts of new friends, including Scatty (fourth from left) who sent her this picture. I suspect it was taken at the radical faerie gathering where Kyle turned 27. Lucky guy.

PPS…I have more pictures. Stay tuned.

NZ friends and Kyle

Torn Sails Text Message

News released about the undelivered text message gave many of us new hope. The message was sent on June 3 from the Nina, but was not delivered. It took RCCNZ some time to get the full content of the message released due to US privacy laws. Once RCCNZ received the official text, it took them several more days to release that to the public.

Here is the full message as received by NZ RCC.

from_unixtime(received_time): 2013-06-03 23:50:25
src_addr: 881623425743
dest_addr: *2

Unfortunately, the text provided little in new information for RCCNZ. Nina’s last location coordinates were confirmed by Evi’s SAT phone on June 4 and they were already searching at that point under the assumption that Nina had been damaged and was either drifting or had sunk and the crew were on life rafts.

RCCNZ Search Summary

The following information is direct from the Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCCNZ) media reports. RCCNZ co-ordinated nine extensive searches , covering about 737,000 square nautical miles with the PC Orion – an area more than eight times the size of New Zealand – without making any sighting. Shoreline searches were also made by fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters.

6 July 2013
The search for Nina has been formally suspended, after 12 days of searching found no sign of the vessel or its crew.

RCCNZ’s Operations Manager, John Seward, said the search effort had comprehensively covered all areas where the vessel or its crew could reasonably have been expected to be found. “The search has been extremely thorough and we are confident that had the yacht or liferaft been within those search areas, we would have found them,” he said.
“For this reason, after carefully reviewing all of the information gathered over the last month, and in the absence of any further developments, the Director of Maritime New Zealand has accepted the recommendation to formally suspend the search.
“This difficult decision has not been made lightly, and we are obviously disappointed that we have not found Nina’s crew,” said Mr Seward. “However, we have had to conclude there is nothing more we can do at this stage.”
RCCNZ has been in contact with the crew’s friends and family, who provided useful background information to assist with the search. “RCCNZ and all those involved in the search operation pass on our deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the missing crew,” said Mr Seward.
He said the suspension means the search will be stood down unless any new information comes to light. However, broadcasts over Maritime Radio will remain in place, advising that the Nina is missing and asking other vessels to report any sightings. “It is possible the search could be reactivated, if any significant new information comes to light.”

4 July

The RNZAF P3 Orion conducted a radar search of an area of 120,745 square nautical miles extending as far west as the Middleton and Elizabeth reefs in the Tasman Sea.

2 July
A visual and radar search south of Norfolk Island, covering approximately 2,100 square nautical miles, conducted by the P3 Orion.

1 July

A visual and radar search of approximately 3,780 square nautical miles north of North Cape, conducted by the P3 Orion.

30 June
An extensive visual and radar search by the P3 Orion of 4,830 square nautical miles north-east of Northland.

29 June
A helicopter undertook an extended shoreline search for a liferaft and crew, from Port Waikato to New Plymouth.

28 June
A twin-engine fixed-wing aircraft was tasked to search the shoreline and coast, starting at Tauroa Point, along Ninety Mile Beach, north of Northland and out to and around the Three Kings Islands.

26 June
A radar search was completed of 324,000 square nautical miles between northern New Zealand and the Australian coast, based on the vessel suffering damage but continuing to make progress towards Australia.

25 June
An RNZAF P3 Orion conducted a radar sweep of 141,000 square nautical miles while transiting from the Cook Islands (returning from an earlier search and rescue mission) to the defined search area of 140,000 square nautical miles, to the immediate north-north-east of New Zealand, based on the vessel being disabled and drifting.

14 June
RCCNZ instigated a communications search, using a range of communications methods to broadcast alerts to the vessel and others in the area.

Searched Areas

Updates from the ground

You are all good, beautiful people. Strangers, family, lovers, and friends. We can not express enough gratitude for what each of you is doing to help bring Kyle and the others home. I believe that together and through Kyle, we are manifesting something very very big. It’s bigger than each of us and even all of us together. Continue to find Kyle’s spirit in your daily lives. I know this is personally helping many of us and the energy and love it puts into the world helps all of us.

The following is a report from Evi’s family, Libby and Laz, who are both in New Zealand right now. They met with the Rescue Coordination Centre New Zealand (RCC NZ) and the US Consulate, and will continue to work on behalf of all of Nina there.

I’m providing this information because it’s detailed and to help reassure everyone that I believe the search is in capable control with RCC NZ. However, because it contains so much detail and because there may be people that know how to analyze this information better than I or other readers, please don’t use this space to share your speculations or questions. I won’t know how to answer them and there are other forums for that kind of response.

__________________________                   __________________________

Laszlo and I met with NZ RCC for about three hours today and got a very full briefing of everything they have done over the past weeks. I will try to summarize everything we learned.
First, we were met at the airport by the operations manager of NZ RCC, John Seward. He drove us out to headquarters and gave us background on the coordination center and the people working there, they seem like an extremely experienced team, all of them with years of experience before they even come to RCC. We then met with Dave Wilson who has been doing a lot of work on our case and he spent 3 hours going over everything, starting with the first day and all the possible scenarios they have considered and why they have searched where they have.
Included is the active aerial chart of where they have looked so far. The red circle is the area in which they have sent out constant radio broadcasts alerting vessels of Nina, each large vessel gets this every day and must physically press a button for the alarm to stop–meaning they will read the alert about Nina at least everyday.
Following is the explanation of the different colors which correspond to different days. The large swaths are radar searches and the smaller ones are visual searches (all aerial).
On the first day of air search 25 June (NZ time) they searched the large, somewhat slender swath between NZ and the Cook Islands in the lighter blue green color using a P3 Orion, they searched this area because there was already a plane returning from there. The P3 Orion is a military grade plane with the best radar detection currently available, as well as other sensors they don’t know about and can’t tell us anyway due to military regulations (NZ RCC searches are often conducted by the military). At this time they were looking for Nina. They have the capability to tell the radar to look for a vessel of Nina’s size. They also were sending out VHF communication with vessels in the area as they flew back towards NZ. Upon finishing this, they also searched the large green square area to the north of NZ, again looking for Nina and contacting any vessels via VHF if need be. If Nina was disabled, the thought was that they may have drifted eastwards from last positions given. The last positions given are the yellow pushpin markers, the one to the far east is the iridium location (assumed from the satellite phone on 4 June), the middle one is the spot beacon message Evi sent out on the 2nd of June and the most westerly one is the position Evi gave via text message on the sat phone to Bob McDavitt (weather guy) on 4 June. Looking at all data, they were using the spot message and iridium as the last positions for the initial searches because their information about iridium phones was that they are correct within 10 miles and thus assumed Evi may have given a faulty position for a variety of reasons (may have read it wrong under duress, unsure what instruments they had onboard for reading correct position etc). This past Saturday, 29 June, they learned iridium is 10 miles plus or minus correct on land, but can be vastly off over water. Given this info they have recently changed the search area, more on that in a bit.
On 26 June, they were still looking for the vessel and not a life raft, they conducted the large search to the west, in brown, that goes from NZ to Aus., again using the P3 Orion to search. This covered all areas that a disabled vessel would be in–this info was derived using complicated drift models looking at both wind pattern and ocean currents over the past however many days since 4 June. If the vessel was disabled but still mobile, it may have gone beyond the search area.
There were several other vessels that left Opua at the same time as Nina headed to Australia, NZ RCC has been in contact with Australian authorities and customs to see which vessels arrived safely and to determine what conditions they encountered, we are still waiting to hear back from Aus.
27 June weather interfered with continued search efforts.
28 June is the hot pink area on the north of the North Island, at 90 mile beach if you know that area. At this time, due to the fact that they found no vessel in the 25 and 26 June searches, they started looking for life raft or vessel debris.
29 June they searched using a fixed wing aircraft and helicopter along the west shore of the North Island from Cape Reinga to Plymouth (South of Auckland), a similar search to the day before.
This led to 30 June search of the small bright, light green rectangle in the lower half of the large green square. At this time they conducted a visual air search, not using the radar, so they could detect possible life raft. The area covered is significantly smaller because they have to fly lower and go slower and use eyes instead of computers.
1 July is the darker green small rectangle just above the previous day’s, same search criteria using drift modeling for life raft dating from 4 June positions.
The search today, 2 July, has shifted west due to the new information they received about Iridium’s lack of accuracy over open water. You can see this area as the dark red rectangle just south of Norfolk Island.
Tomorrow and most likely Thursday they will not be able to continue aerial searches due to weather.
We inquired with NZ RCC about what, if anything Australian RCC could bring to the table. We learned that Australian RCC has been privy to the search and independently created their own search patterns using drift modeling (they have the same technology as NZ). The two are almost exactly the same, which means Australia would have conducted the same searches.
The hospitality and sharing of information provided by NZ RCC has been above and beyond our expectations, we are very thankful for their tremendous work thus far.
Libby (Evi’s niece) and Laszlo (Evi’s son)
Search Area 1 Search Area 2