"He's gone," Sherman said. "I'm alone now and he left me."
Strykowski, 73, had been swept away. Like Cultra, he was never found.
"I'm alone. I'm trying to find things to make my situation better," Sherman said.
Stay with the boat
He remembered Cultra's advice for an accident: Stay with the boat.
Thirty-foot waves tossed the sailboat like a toy rattle, battering and bloodying Sherman inside. Darkness fell two hours after the capsizing.
Sherman thought he was sending an SOS signal to the world by activating an "epirb" -- short for emergency position indicating radiobeacon -- which is a satellite-connecting beacon that resembles a floatable walkie-talkie.
He tied it to his body, high and dry, for safekeeping but he didn't realize he was shutting it off by removing it from the water. Unknown to him, the Coast Guard became confused about the on-and-off distress call.
He slept the first night in the bathroom and shower. A life jacket and two five-gallon jugs of water buoyed him from drowning. He had donned a second wetsuit to fight the cold, but his teeth still chattered uncontrollably.
Every time Sherman nodded off, a splash awakened him.
The boom, now underwater, drummed against the cabin.
Fatigued and hungry the next morning, he scavenged for food.
"I found a bag of Bing cherries," he said, "and I thought I hit the lottery."
Despite his desperate situation, he had work to do.
Armed with a wood chisel and a hammer, Sherman spent four hours carving a hole in the bottom of the plywood-and-fiberglass hull, which was now the submerged boat's top deck and visible to any passing vessels. He bloodied his hand as the waves knocked him off balance.
Water gushed through the hole, so Sherman wore a snorkeling mask.
With an opening to the world, he dispatched another SOS: He tethered the epirb to a line and tossed it into the roiling seas.
The strobe light ignited, and the distress call was sent.
With that, the crew's families back in the United States, who thought everyone was lost, knew for certain someone was alive.
All the time, the storm kept raging.