The ocean cruise liner Jewel of the Seas sails to the North Sea in this April 2004 file photo. / INGO WAGNER/PICTURE-ALLIANCE/DPA/AP IMAGES
Boston (CBS NEWS) -- A Massachusetts couple's luxury cruise turned into a life-saving operation at sea.
Roy Nagy, of Amesbury, Mass., thinks fate had something to do with his wife waking up in the middle of their first night aboard the Royal Caribbean ship called Jewel of the Seas, en route from San Juan, Puerto Rico, to St. Maarten. She opened the sliding glass door in their cabin so they could hear the ocean.
"We started to go back to sleep, and right after that, we started to hear voices out in the water," Nagy told CBS Boston station WBZ-TV. "We heard, 'Hey, hey, hey, hey!' We sat and thought about it for a minute and then we said, 'Someone's out there and we better make a call.'"
Two other couples also thought they heard those cries for help. The ship's captain took the reports seriously, turning the cruise ship around and searching with floodlights.
After about an hour, they found a white spot in the ocean. "When it finally hit on something that was clearly sticking out of the water a little bit, that was a rush," said Nagy. "As the ship got closer, we saw the guy there waving. That's when we really got goosebumps."
The captain sent a rescue crew in a smaller boat. It returned with three American citizens who live in St. Croix. Their speedboat had capsized and had been floating upside-down for 10 hours. At one point, that boat's owner, Matt Spencer, was trapped in the cabin underwater.
"I really just took away from this that there's a lot of really nice and beautiful people in the world," Spencer told WBZ-TV.
He and the other survivors met the Nagys and posed for pictures together with broad smiles. Nagy says it's a smile of relief that he and his wife picked up the phone. It was a small gesture that made all the difference.
"We still get goosebumps," he said.