Dustin Reynolds says, “I lost an arm, a leg, and all my money, but that somehow led me to a great adventure.”
After sailing around the world for seven years, Dustin Reynolds became the first person to do so.
Guinness World Records says that Reynolds, who is also known as the “Single-Handed Sailor,” was the first double amputee to sail around the world by himself last December.
The idea for the record-breaking trip came about four years after the Hawaiian sailor lost his left arm and leg when he was hit by a drunk driver in 2008.
Reynolds was broke at that hard time in his life, but he still had an old fishing boat.
The skipper said he found a new goal when he found a website with sailing records and saw that there were no double amputees on the list.
“I lost an arm and a leg, and my money was gone. But somehow, that led me on a great adventure,” he told Guinness World Records.
Reynolds started the big trip on June 18, 2014, after getting some practice. The first leg of the trip was the first time he had ever sailed alone.
The sailor said, “I don’t think anything could have fully prepared me.” “I mostly tried to get the boat in the best shape possible, with spare parts for everything you can think of and lots of food and rum.”
The trip, which took him to 36 countries and overseas territories, was supposed to take five years, but it ended up taking over seven years because COVID-19 had rules and his engine and transmission broke down.
The sailor told Guinness World Records that he had only been at sea for 11 months, with most of that time spent on land.
Reynolds did everything by himself, which had its own set of challenges. He told the organization that he sometimes used his teeth to help raise the sail on his boat.
“It’s hard to do everything with one hand, and it’s tiring to do everything by myself,” he said.
Reynolds said that the biggest problem for this trip was finding the money to pay for all the repairs his ship needed.
Crowdfunding made a big difference, and Reynolds said he’s grateful to everyone who helped him on his record-breaking trip, especially his mother.
“My mom was against me doing this at first, and she still gets nervous when I go to sea,” he told Guinness World Records. He went on to say that even though she was against it at first, she is now his biggest fan.
Reynolds said that he wants to be the first person with two missing legs to land on the moon.
Even though he joked, “I think I’ll need a much more successful crowdfunding to pay for that one.”