Granny "Opens a Can" on Somali Pirates
Where man always bites dog
Tuesday, November 20, 2018, 14:15:UTC)(
1 February 2012
While out for a pleasure cruise in the Gulf of Oman, the yacht Fading Star was attacked by seven Somali pirates, who intended to hold the craft and its passengers and crew for ransom. The Malawi-flagged yacht, owned by Row, Row, Row Your Boat Inc., operates discount pleasure cruises from ports in Djibouti, and has been attacked four times previously. Each time the company paid the ransom and the pirates set the vessel free. However, Mrs. Keeler, who prefers to be called 'Granny', changed that precedent in a very big way.
Granny had been given tickets on the cruise by her three sons for Christmas along with discount air fare to the nation of Djibouti. After her husband died, Granny's children had wanted to send her on a cruise to help her get her mind off of her late husband. However, the three, all oil rig workers living in Corpus Christi, TX, have been out of work because of Obama Administration restrictions on oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico and could only afford the discount cruise out of Djibouti for their mother.
After arriving in Djibouti, while waiting for her cruise to depart, Granny heard from some local street vendors that the yacht she was leaving on had been attacked by pirates previously, and Granny decided take a leaf out of the Boy Scout handbook and be prepared. She found some merchants who could sell her a sawed-off shotgun, which she purchased and placed in her hand-bag. When asked how she managed to get the firearm aboard the yacht, Granny just laughed and said, "Security on that two-bit tub wasn't much."
Two days after setting sail, the crew of the Fading Star sent out a distress signal that a small craft was approaching at high speeds, and requested assistance. The call was answered by an Iranian frigate on patrol.
"I didn't trust the Iranians to save my skin," says Granny, "Besides, they couldn't even get to us for 20 minutes."
When the assailants boarded the ship, the crew offered little resistance. "Those lilly-livered, yellow-bellied wimps probably helped the pirates get on board," Granny recalled. Then the pirates began to bind the crew and passengers with zip ties, but Granny was having none of it. "What? You afraid an old lady like me is going to run over there and tackle you?", she said to the pirates' English-speaking interpreter. "Besides, I have to go use the bathroom, so unless you want to clean me up afterward, you keep your hands to yourself."
Granny then went to her cabin and got her shotgun. She returned to the deck of the ship where two pirates were holding the bound passengers at gunpoint and four more were standing in a group smoking cigarettes. The leader had gone to the bridge to contact the owner of the ship. Granny dispatched the two guards with her first round of 00 buck shot and killed the group of four with a second round as they turned to see what was going on. The leader, who came running to the door of the bridge at the sound of gunfire, took Granny's third round as he opened the door.
By the time the Iranian frigate arrived, there was little left to do but swab the deck.
"I was lucky to get all four with my second round of buck shot," said Granny, "but I figured that the dispersion pattern would be just about right at that range. Besides, I had three more rounds in the magazine if I missed one of them."
Several members of the United Nations International Maritime Organization have decried Granny's actions, calling them a "Blatant breach of International Maritime Law." To this, Granny replies, "I couldn't care less what those pompous windbags say about it. What are they going to do, take away my birthday?"