Greek ship Evanghelia (en. Gospel), built in shipyards Harland and Wolff from Belfast, Northern Ireland, was launched on water in 1942. During the WWII served as an american cargo, then transformed into a commercial ship.
On 15 october 1968 the ship ran aground at about 1.5 Mm from the Romania shore. With 12 hours before failure, the crew on Evanghelia asked for help via radio to Romanian Search and Rescue, using the SOS “Save Our Soul“, letting them know they are in big trouble.
The Greeks sent twice incorrect coordinates, far north from their location, and obvious they could not be found. Because the greek crew stopped responding to radio messages (which was a strange situation), next day the rescuers started to search for the ship in the opposite direction. They manage to locate the ship on the Costinesti Resort’s shore.
The ship was in good shape, so the captain of the search and rescue crew immediately decided to pull the ship out of the sandbank. After several hours of pulling, they managed to get the ship to float again. The next morning, rescuers returned at the ship’s location in order to get it offshore, so that it could continue its route.
When they connected the rope to the ship, they found out it got stuck again, but this time even more deeper. The commander of Romanian rescue ship sent a diver to check the stern of the vessel. He reported that the ship’s propeller was destroyed, sign that the engines were put on “Full speed ahead”.
From that point Romanian rescuers decided to stop the rescue because there were clues that overnight the crew deliberately drove the ship into the seafloor.
The insurer started an investigation and after consulting with Romanian rescuers, decided that Evanghelia ship was ran aground by the crew intentionally and refused to pay the insurance premium.
The vessel became the symbol of Costinesti Resort, Romania, and one of the attractions for tourists.