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Woman Gets Message From Father in Bottle

August 7, 2003

OSLO, Norway (AP) _ More than 26 years after her father died at sea, a Norwegian woman was shocked to receive a message from him in a bottle.

The crinkled note, with her father’s handwriting in red marker pen, aroused ``powerful feelings″ in her, Guri Abelsen said Wednesday.

Abelsen said her father, Ola Abelsen, had told her he wrote a message in a bottle which he had thrown into the sea from his fishing boat, Utvik Senior, in February 1977.

Later that month, the boat sank with Abelsen and eight other men on board, after disappearing off the Norwegian coast.

``Best regards, the Utvik Senior of Tromsoe, in the sea this Feb. 2, 1977,″ the message said.

``It was like a sign of life from the Utvik Senior,″ Guri Abelsen said.

The bottle was found by a vacationing couple on a beach in Finnmark, northern Norway, in 1978. The couple’s daughter found the note when she rummaged through their belongings after they died recently, and decided to write to the Abelsen family enclosing the bottled message.

The families of the Utvik Senior’s missing crew were unhappy with a 1978 inquiry into the boat’s disappearance that blamed bad weather for the sinking.

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