PORT OF TAMPA, Florida -- A cruise ship that took a detour to help the Carnival Triumph has returned to Tampa.
Some passengers on the Carnival Legend say they first heard about helping the Triumph not from a news broadcast or a captain's announcement, but from looking at a map and realizing they were headed in a different direction.
"We stopped heading in the direction of Mexico and started going up, and then the captain came on and said, 'We have to help some stranded passengers,'" says Legend passenger David McCormack.
This cruise was McCormack's first, and his itinerary came with a special excursion: traveling to the Triumph after a fire knocked out that ship's power.
"I'd be happy if that were me in that situation," he says. "I'd be glad someone was coming out to help us."
They knew that taking a little time out of their vacation would make someone else's trip much better.
"Because of the heat, they were using sheets as tents," recalls Legend passenger Steve Pankrantz.
Passengers say the Legend stayed for five hours, providing food, supplies, lifeboats, and humor.
"They had sheets that said, 'Send rum,'" Legend passenger Jodi Foster says. "[The Legend crew] tried to get our comedian over. They tried for two and a half hours, but the seas were so rough, they had to bring him back."
The detour delayed the Legend's arrival at its next port, Cozumel, but the ship's stop there was extended as a result. The Legend's passengers were just happy they could help out. This triumph will likely be a legend they won't soon forget.
"The seas were so bad that there was no way Carnival could have gotten those people off," Foster says. "We were ready to take them on board. We didn't know what they were going to do, but we sure would have made room for them."