Saturday, December 29, 2007

IX. Dive Series - The Next Phase

Tues 01-Jan - 0032 hrs New Year's Day

"Come, wander with me she said into regions yet untrod. Read with me what is still unread in the manuscript of God." - Longfellow

The words return to me as they did in Louisiana almost a month ago. The assembling swaths of sonar data reveal the seabed to us as if it were a scroll from a mighty manuscript written by a mighty hand. The numerous ROV dives are the Rosetta Stone for reading the great manuscript.

The seabed tells a different tale at every scale of observation. The submarine terrain appears tired, bent, and worn- a stark yet welcomed contrast to our jagged expectations. The seabed is deeply pitted, torn, and scarred. It cryptically cries out in past neglect, ruin, and abandon. Sparkling coral and happy creatures thrive in the shallows blissfully unaware of the decay of their heritage laying just out beyond the reef. The water deepens and color fades to grey where predators roam. Deeper still, the seabed appears lifeless and void. As the ROV touches down onto the deep seafloor, a benthic nephloid cloud erupts, engulfing the remote intruder. As the silt settles in the darkness, polycheate worms withdraw into their delicate burrows. Now under immense pressure, the ROV is in total solitude, stillness, and cold. There is no margin for failure in the ocean. The seafloor speaks of past failure, where grim reminders of the lost and broken abound. It is a relief to be back on board the Persistence in relative safety.

The Persistence is amid uncovering the final planned quadrant of the search area. Once completed and ROV ground-truthed, we will assemble the data and read from the last scroll in this mighty manuscript.

Mon 31-Dec - 1022hrs
The Persistence spent yesterday performing multiple dives with the ROV. The purpose of the dives is for collecting video of each sonar target. Typically, the sonar target is quickly identified and ruled out from the ROV video. The ROV operations lasted until dusk, where we resumed sonar survey operations through the night. Today, we are performing more ROV dives on targets of potential interest.

Sun 29-Dec- 2335 hrs

Dockside, the ROV team went into action this morning on board the Persistence. Before a test dive could be performed, all systems were checked and rechecked. Once the diagnostics were complete, the Persistence and crew went out to a test dive site known to be free of obstructions and major hazards to the ROV. The purpose of testing the ROV was two fold: 1) ensure all systems function perfectly underwater in full operation mode, and 2) prove the Persistence could hold location over the ROV, track the vehicle, and maneuver itself to keep the ROV umbilical cable out of the ship's screws.
During the first test dive, the deployment went smoothly. The ROV motored to the bow of the boat, while the captain kept the stern of the Persistence into the seas. The purpose of this maneuver was to keep the ROV umbilical out of the ship's screws. During this maneuver, the umbilical got temporarily hung up on the ship's hull, but freed itself. The visibility through the water column with the ROV cameras was excellent. When the ROV reached the seafloor we noticed it could not maintain control over it's attitude because of the very strong currents. On the second and third test dive more weight was added to better control the umbilical and ROV. At dusk, the final test was successful and proved we could maintain safe control over both the Persistence and ROV. With a sigh of relief from all, the Persistence and crew resumed survey mode. We will run additional sonar lines into the early morning.

Sat. 29-Dec-1100 hrs
From Tim Miller:

Please allow me to give my sincere appreciation for all the comments supporting our efforts in our search for Natalee. Today is an exciting day as we will now begin working the ROV in hopes of finding a special treasure at the bottom of the sea named Natalee.

Let us keep Natalee, Dave, and Beth in our hearts and prayers. Also, let's not forget all the other families of missing loved ones.

Texas Equusearch has been so very blessed with the support of Underwater Expeditions, the R/V Persistence (Silvetti Group), and their crew - which I think is the best in the world- for all their heartfelt efforts.

May it be His will to bring Natalee home.
-Tim Miller
Texas Equusearch


Anonymous said...

You go Tim and crew of Persistence! What you do is so very special and a gift to parents of the missing beyond measure.

Don't let anyone in Aruba dishearten you. We know what they are all about.

And yes our prayers continue to wish you God's speed and safety. Thank you just isn't big enough words for our appreciation.

Katablog, KS

Wendy said...

Love and Prayers are with you. Thank you for all you do. God Bless.

Anonymous said...

From Meridian, MS: The updates are so informative and I eagerly await each one. To Tim and all the crew of the Persistence, may God keep His loving hands upon you and guide you steadily along.

Anonymous said...

God bless each and every one of you in this onging effort to find Natalee! Yes, may it be God's will that Natalee is found and justice can finally be served. My thoughts and prayers are with each and every one of you, as well as with Dave, Beth, and all the friends and family that loved Natalee. We appreciate so much your ongoing effort to bring some closure to this family. My prayers are with you. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

If everyone who reads this today says but a single prayer, maybe that will help your efforts today.

If it is God's will, you will find her.

Good luck and Godspeed!

Anonymous said...

There are over 1000 hits on Kyle's site per day. One prayer each is a lot. Let's knock on God's door today and pray for his blessing.

Anonymous said...

I have been following this case since day one - I commend you and bless you for your kind heart and relentless efforts, I feel as though Natalee is my own daughter as well and hope and pray to god that she is found for the sake of her sole and the sake of her mom and dad. God Bless all of you

Anonymous said...

God bless you.ytffdvxq

Anonymous said...

Will the ROV be able to find anything that the sonar did not detect? It was my understanding that the ROV would be used after a positive indication was found on a scan (so they would have something to go down and examine). Wouldn't a metal cage have shown up rather clearly in those sonar scans?

Perhaps every effort is not based entirely on the metal cage theory. I would be interested in a clarification.

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful thing you are all doing. It's heartwarming to see the good side of mankind since we've seen so much of the bad side.
Thanks to you all.

Anonymous said...

To our heroes aboard the Persistence ~

Our hearts are with you this day as you embark on this next phase in your journey to finding this precious child.

May the Christmas Spirit of hope richly bless you, Persistence and give cause to celebrate the meaning of Natalee's name, "Christmas child".

May God's Spirit be upon you this Christmas season, that you may find Natalee, and bring her home to her family.

Laura must indeed be so very proud to have a father who embodies the meaning - in every sense of the word, of honoring God!

God bless you Tim Miller, Silvetti Group, Kyle and Persistence Crew!
May the miracle of your love summon a miracle from the sea!


Anonymous said...

Everyone use the power of possitive thinking !

Keep thinking and saying "This ship and crew WILL find the answers!", "This ship and crew WILL bring justice to Natalee and her family!", etc.

Prayers, best wishes, and the power of possitive belief thinking are all being used to locate the answers from this search.

Bring Natalee home and find justice for Natalee and her family.

Magnolia said...

You are all just a bunch of really nice guys.
If it is God's will I know that
you will find her and bring her
Thanks to you all.

Debbie (BFN) said...

Tim, Kyle and all the others aboard the Persistence. Thank you for doing what you are doing and being who you are. Prayers are said for each of you.

Faith, Hope and Prayer for Natalee and her family.

Betty said...

I think that God has sent everyone of you down from heaven as Angels to bring Natalie home. Bless everyone of you in your hard efforts and dedication. I know in my heart that you will find Natalie. Bless the Holloway family and most of all Natalie

promice2bnice said...

Best wishes from Meridian, MS.
God bless the heroic efforts of the crew of the Persistence.
Thank you for what you are doing.

Anonymous said...

God bless you Tim Miller, Kyle and the Persistence crew. May you bring Natalee home. Our thoughts and prayers are with you!!!

Anonymous said...

Amazed by the sophistication of their equipment. If there is evidence they have a very good chance of finding it.

Sharon/Tx said...

God bless you Tim, your daughter would be so proud. Kyle and crew - we are praying for your safety and for answers. Thank you, thank you!

Kath said...

Heres to the day we have all been waiting for. I hope you all got some sleep last night. We are all with you in spirit. Dave, Beth, Tim, ect... My arms are stretched all around you, saying prayers daily, for you to get your answers on this voyage. The very best are there doing the job! Keep up the GREAT work guys. You're the best!

Anonymous said...

I have a little girl and I don't know what I would do if I didn't know where she was. My prayers are with her family.

Lynn said...

Dear Tim and Crew

Thank you and god watch over all of you. I hope you find that "treasure"

Donnar2015 said...

Kyle, thank you for the updates. Tim and Crew and Persistence Thank You so much for all your hard work in trying to bring our Precious Angel Natalee home. Everyone is praying that you find Natalee and return Natalee to her parents and loved ones. Tim your a hero to many...God love you all and prayers for your safety and prayers that Natalee will be found.

Donna, IN

Anonymous said...

I have a practical question and I hope you have an opportunity to address it. Say, for example, that you have 10 regions of interest within the 22 sq mile grid. Do you prioritize the targets based upon locale within the grid region or do you evaluate the highest probability sites based on results of side scan sonar first?

I am just trying to get a handle on how you are selecting targets for the ROV.


Issaquah, WA

Anonymous said...

May the spirit of God shine down on each of you, and guide you right to where you need to be. I believe in the power of prayer, and I know that our God is a wonderful and powerful God. Thankyou so much for all that you are doing to find, as Tim said, "Our Special Treasure, Natalee".

mayan_moons said...

Tim....Laura's so blessed to have had you for a Dad & i know she's looking down on her father bursting with pride for all you do to help other family's, help that wasn't there for you & Laura. We're proud of you too Tim & like Natalee & the Holloway's include you as part of our family.

Prayers with you, Kyle & crew!

texasmom said...

My prayers are with you Tim, and Persistence crew. Your very presence in the waters off of Aruba is answered prayer in itself. May God bless you and keep you safe in this endeavor. I pray that He will lead you to our precious Natalee so she can finally come home. Heartfelt thanks to all of you!

Anonymous said...

God bless you all for what you are doing! I am from houston and Tim is a hero to us here for all he does.

kescah said...

You guys are amazing; wish all of us could grab a ship and go help and cover the entire ocean. It looks so big... I am so thankful that this one area will be so very well searched and I hope you have success. Blessings!

Anonymous said...

It is such a great feeling to know their is such unselfishness in the hearts of others. Though I am just an outsider hoping for all the best for Natalee and her family, I THANK YOU for sharing your journey with all us.

Tim, I admire you for devoting your life to helping to others! May your crown be filled with jewels. You are a true role model for us all.

God Bless,

Monroe, LA

TexasWineSnob said...

I am on vacation in D.C., but just had to find a computer to check on the search for Natalee. The posting are awesome on here and I hope and pray that you will be successful in finding Natalee. May God Bless all of you!

Eva in Virginia said...

I cannot begin to say thank you enough that someone has taken the precious job of finding Natalee. May God's direction, protection and speed be with you as you navigate through the waters. We have prayerfully followed this case and have grown to known close to members of this family. We pray that the search is profitable and produces a harvest of righteousness for this family. May God truly bless and protect those who have sacrificied so much to partake in this great miracle.

Eva in Virginia said...

May God truly bless everyone who has sacrificied to be a part of this fruitful mission. We have followed this story closely and grown to know members of this family. We will be in prayer for the fruitfulness and safety of this mission. God bless each and every one of you!

alabamamom said...

God Bless Each & Every one of you that is in any way associated with this search aboard Persistence.
Know that our prayers continue to surround you with the strength & wisdom that only God our father can provide for you.
We have been praying for a miracle & we were Blessed with Persistence , her crewmembers and support staff & generous donors. For that we are all so eternally grateful. I pray that God will also reward each & every one of you for the good deeds that you have done , the hard work & dedication that you have shown . Thank you all so very much.

alabamamom said...

I wrote this for you all tonite, as you have been on my mind daily!

Like a bird upon a wire,
Like a ship upon the open sea
Sailing halfway round the world
Seeking Truth , all for Natalee

Often times, in open water
Seas will swell & toss us all around
But we never did give up
Searching for the truth , that shall be found

Feeling at times , such lost & lonely souls
Tattered , tired , just barely hanging on
Looking up ,I see the stars so brightly shining
Then I remember , what this is all about

Like a bird upon a wire,
Like a ship upon the open sea
Nearly halfway round the world ,
seeking Truth , All for Natalee

Blessings to All,

Anonymous said...

God bless each of you in this onging effort to find Natalee. Tim, I too pray that it be God's will that Natalee is found and those responsible will be brought to justice. My thoughts and prayers are with each and every one of you, as well as with Natalee's entire family and all of her friends. I hope you know that we appreciate so much your ongoing effort to bring some closure to this family. You have a church here in California praying for you.

Anonymous said...

Thank each and everyone of you for what you are doing. We are praying for you daily. God Bless you all.

Greenville, SC

Anonymous said...

Much gratitude and admiration from Portland, Oregon, to all whose hearts are turned to this weighty task. Your love, faith and courage light the darkness.

Sharon/Tx said...

Good morning gentlemen! The blog updates are awesome. Natalee or Tim's daughter could have been any of our daughters. I cannot tell you how much I admire you for coming to their aid. You truly are heroes already. We need to pray harder now for your safety, for calm seas and for the ROV's to accomplish their mission. Godspeed!

Anonymous said...

Ephesians 3:20-
Now to Him who is able to do
far more abundantly than all that we ask or think according to the
power at work within us.
I specifically pray in Jesus Name
that you be able to find the answers. and May the Holy Spirit
work in thoses people lives that did this to Natalee.

bleachedblack (SM) said...

Thank-you all for this search. Hope today is the day......stay safe. My prayers are with you all.

sirensong said...

May God bless you 100 times over for your kindness and persistence!Alot of people out here praying for you and the family. Truly there is good vs evil in this world. Aruba lying, hiding and promoting the selfishness that rules them. And Tim, the crew of Pesistence, with hearts led only by love. Thank you for inspiring me and so many others with your compassion and selflessness. Love and prayers from Northern Ca.

Anonymous said...

Persistence, please bring Natalee home!

Anonymous said...


Bali said...

God is with you Tim and crew!
He said to "seek and you shall find"......let us all stand on that promise! I pray God will be over every crew member, each piece of equipment and the boat itself as you endeavor to find Natalie!
Such sacrifice! God bless you all!

Kat_Gram said...

I was doing my readings today and I came across this from :
2 Corinthians 3:1-6
You are an epistle of Christ,... written not with ink, but by the Spirit of the Living God, not on tablets of stone, but on tablets of flesh, that is of the heart.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

"Come... wander with me she said, into regions yet untrod, and read with me what is still unread in the manuscripts of God". (Longfellow)

God's blessings be upon all of you, Persistence as you continue in this day searching for a miracle with the hope that God's manuscripts have yet to tell the story of Natalee's final chapters here in earth.

God bless you, Persistence.


G said...

Happy New Year Persistence crew! You are missed and loved by your families. We miss you Kyle, and think about you always.
No matter what the outcome of this search we are so proud of you and the entire crew for your beautiful hearts and your "persistance".
Wish we could ring in the new year together, but will look forward to celebrating when you are home.

r&s_MA said...

Happy New Year to the crew and families.
May you find what you seek. God Bless You all and keep you safe .Our Prayers are with all of you and the Holloway family, as well as all the missing,that they will be found.
Thank You to all who have made this trip possible,it's a very special gift that is beyond words.
God Bless! R&S &family

lousw said...

Lord, guide the Persistence each and every day
Give them a bright light to help them find their way
To the very place that they must be
To find our precious angel, Natalee

We offer our prayers to the team as well
Because, in our hearts they all dwell
It is time for the pain to end
So lives can live again and start to mend

Oh, God, in Heaven above
Hear our plea for one we love
Do not let this end without Natalee
Let them bring her home to her family.

Anonymous said...

From Meridian, MS:

Happy New Year!
God Bless the crew of the Persistence and God Bless the familiy of Natalee Holloway!

Pita said...

Happy New Year to the crew of the Persistence!

May God bless you, guide you, and bring you home safely.

Anonymous said...

“Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that the antichrist was coming,
so now many antichrists have appeared. You have the anointing that comes from the Holy One, and you all have knowledge...
I write to you not because you do not know the truth but because you do, and because every lie is alien to the truth…” (1 John 2)

Persistence, your compassion summons us to become bearers of Natalee’s truth, a child’s truth that rests in the heart of God, a truth that can never be crushed or destroyed by the antichrists who inflict this heartache and vicious cruelty on Natalee and her family.

May we be worthy of bringing Natalee’s truth into the world, where her suffering summons voices of justice to unite in hope against the savagery inflicted upon this child and her family at the hands of immoral people. May your courage guide us in this battle against the antichrists, that seek to crush the human dignity of God’s precious children as evil seeks to devour a child through vicious indifference that tries to suggest her life had no value or sanctity! But your love raises her up, Persistence in the glory of God’s precious light and truth! May she find comfort in your embrace through the power of love that surrounds her, where her truth is held in the hearts of the Persistence, may she gently be carried home.


Sharon/Tx said...

Happy New Year Kyle and crew. Kyle, you write so beautifully. I almost feel like I am there. I am praying for you all.

GabbyG said...

Happy New Year to the Persistence and crew, and everyone who made this blessed mission possible. Our prayers surround you every minute of every day.
Each day brings you closer to the answers you seek. Stand tall and hold on to your faith.
We love you all.
God Bless!

alabamamom said...

Dear Kyle ,Tim & all of those involved with the search emotionally, physically or financially, my prayers remain with you.I so look forward to reading your daily updates to get a small picture of what you have experienced that day. Kyle, you are such a Beautiful& gifted writer as well as a scientist, that you are able to transport us by your words along on a bit of journey & allow us to "see" through your eyes the ocean floor, the currents , the "umbilical cord" that runs from the equipment to the ship & what a finely tuned & precise dance you have been choreographing underneath the ocean surface in Aruba.
Thank you again for all of your hard work & dedication. And also , thank you for allowing us to "dance along" with you in spirit.
Blessings & Love,

Tiko-BFN said...

Blessings to you and the crew and pray that this may be the day we have hoped for.

Anonymous said...

It would seem to be that the presence and persistence of the nepheloid layer would complicate your bathymetry, since one would have to take into account the reflections of lidar or ultrasonic pulses from the upper interface of this layer, as well as their absorption within the layer. If, the layer is indeed so persistent as to demostrate the cloud you described, then finding a body which is hidden within, would most likely be an impossible task.

Anonymous said...

When do we get an update?

Anonymous said...

all the way from Mexico we continue to watch your progress and perseverance. Your ship is rightly named for its crew. We also continue to pray for your safety.

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