A shark fisherman who said he endured a year lost at sea in a seemingly incredible tale of survival arrived Friday in Mexico to meet the parents of his friend who died early in the ordeal.
Jose Salvador Alvarenga, a native of El Salvador, said he was honoring a promise he made to his buddy, Ezequiel Cordoba, that he would share the man’s last words with his family, The Associated Press reported.
Alvarenga, 37, saved those thoughts for Cordoba’s family but told reporters: "I don't feel capable yet of telling what I remember."
"When I talk about that day, I feel like I am back there in the moment when I was suffering and hurting,” he said. “... what I am trying to do is to forget that."
Alvarenga washed up on a remote Pacific atoll in a battered 24-foot fishing boat on Jan. 30. He claims that after being swept out to sea by a storm, he survived month after month on raw fish and other sea creatures, quenching his thirst with rainwater and his own urine. He said Cordoba died of starvation.
Officials have said he was dehydrated from his oceanic odyssey, but he has also complained of swollen joints, aches and pains, and mental confusion. He was walking better on Friday, the AP reported.
A book and movie about Alvarenga’s voyage may be in the works. His lawyer, Benedicto Perlea, said they were speaking with publishers and producers.