Deaf hero is the first to sail around the world

gerry hughes
gerry hughes Image credit:

It’s Deaf Awareness Week. ‘What’s that?’ we hear you cry (as we are fortunate to have our hearing intact) Well, the seven days pencilled in on the UK Council on Deafness calendar between 6-12 May promotes the valid support organisations carry out relating to topics relating to those with hearing impediments.

One person who defines those who believe a loss of hearing equals a sheltered lifestyle is 55-year-old Gerry Hughes who has recently become the first deaf person to single-handily sail around the world.

Gerry and his trustworthy boat, Quest III set sail on September 1 2012, leaving his wife and two children on shore Hughes’ voyage wasn’t all ‘plain sailing’ as he encountered setbacks during his journey through the five capes such as faulty electronic equipment and even capsized due to over-towering waves.

His love of sailing cruises back to his infant years when Gerry’s father passed down his love of his marine pastime when he was just two years old, by the age of 14 Hughes was anchored in by his affection towards sailing and was eager to set sail.

Notching up an incredible 32,000 miles (51,500 km) Gerry returned to dry land this week where he was met by a team of supporters at Troon Marina, South Ayrshire, one of which was his wife Kay who told journalists she was ‘overwhelmed and immensely proud’ of her husband.

For more information about Deaf Awareness Week visit the Action on Hearing Loss website.