IN August 2023, off Wakayama Prefecture, Japan, Capt. Nicasio Pisueña Jr. turned his watch to a fellow officer. The night was clear, the sea calm. He retired to his cabin following a long, grueling day of work. He knew that all was well.
Pisueña never thought that a few hours later, an accident would changed his life forever.
A collision. A capsized ship. Five men overboard, three of whom he saved, and two missing. At the time, Pisueña was full of fear, guilt and depression. But even as the court of law decreed him and his men innocent, the ordeal etched deep into his being.
"I came to a point when I thought of quitting seafaring. People who never knew what truly happened gossiped and vilified me. Some brought my age into play; they say I was too young to be a captain," Pisueña said.
Pisueña almost wished that people would have heard what the Japanese authorities said — indeed, he was young, 31, but he handled the crisis better than an experienced captain.
Photo by Mikee Esplago 
Article by Yashika Torib

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