It was a balmy night in the Caribbean sea. Amy and her family had been enjoying a blissful three days aboard the Royal Caribbean’s ‘Rhapsody of the Seas’ and were finishing out the night having drinks with the ship’s band in the lounge.
On March 24, 1998, at around 1 a.m., Amy wandered back to her room. It was late and she was feeling tired and a little seasick. By the next morning, Amy was gone, leaving her family to wonder, ‘how could she have possibly vanished from on board a cruise ship?’…
Pleasure cruises are perhaps one of the most common and sought after vacations available. Not to mention one of the safest. That is, except for a number of crimes that most cruise lines would rather not admit happen often. One such incident occurred in March, 1998, when the Bradley family set sail from Puerto Rico.
Amy Bradley was the ultimate All-American girl. Pretty, outgoing and athletic, Amy was a trained lifeguard but was also terrified of going out onto the open ocean. After a bit of prodding and convincing however, Amy’s mother, Iva, had finally persuaded her to join the family on their upcoming cruise to the Caribbean…
Vacation for the Ages
Despite Amy’s butterflies, the vacation was starting out to be one of the Bradley’s best. The family had boarded the Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Rhapsody of the Seas, in Florida and were now bound for the tropical paradise of the Caribbean. First stop, Curacao.
Plenty of Distractions
As per her fear of water, Amy was reluctant to walk up next to the railing, but with the help of her brother and father, she was able to overcome even that. Amy put her fears aside and enjoyed the cruise. After all, it offered plenty of fun distractions for a young lady like Amy. The ship even had a band…
The first three days of the cruise were some of the best of the Bradleys’ lives. The nights were full of great music, laughter, and drinking. Amy and her brother even hung out with the ship’s band, Blue Orchid, long into the night. She partied with one of the band’s member’s, Alister Douglas, until around 1 a.m. on March 24.
Amy had been having some trouble with the boat rocking back and forth on the waves since they had left Aruba and decided to stay out on the balcony of their suite to get some fresh air. When her father came and checked on her at around 5:15 am, she was resting comfortably on a chair up there. The door was closed. She was safe. But in the morning…
Early Morning Slumber
Amy’s father had seen his 23-year-old daughter sleeping on the deck right outside their bedroom sometime between 5:15 and 5:30 a.m. but he woke up with a start about an hour later. The minute he got up, he knew something was wrong. Amy was missing; she was nowhere to be found.
The purser didn’t broadcast the first page for Amy until 10 minutes to 8:00 that morning. By that time, most of the passengers had disembarked for the day. The panicked father ran to the captain and told them that they needed to lock the ship down, that his daughter was missing. He begged them not to put the gangplank down, begged them to back the ship off the dock so that no one could get off. “Somebody’s got my daughter!” he yelled…
Finally, the captain ordered a search of the ship. The crew combed through all 10 decks, tossed all 999 rooms, and found nothing. The whole ordeal turned into a three-day search. After it was all said and done, they could find no trace of the 23-year-old. Their first thought was that Amy might have fallen overboard by mistake or else…jumped.
Not at All Suicidal
Many people did indeed wonder if perhaps Amy had taken her own life. Her family assured them that their daughter wasn’t at all suicidal. She had a brand new puppy waiting for her to pick up the moment she arrived home, she was having a great time, had a great life. There was no reason for her to jump off of the ship. Perhaps she had fallen off the side, though, after a night of drunken partying?
This too seemed unlikely. The sea that night was extremely calm, so even if she had fallen overboard, Amy was a talented swimmer, she could easily have swam close to the shore or called out for someone to help her if she’d accidentally fallen in. They searched the water for her body anyway, but turned up no evidence of her having fallen overboard either.
Since her disappearance on that grim, March day, so many years ago, many people have claimed to have sighted Amy whilst meandering through the Caribbean. According to a number of sources, Amy has been seen all over the Caribbean, including the islands of Curaçao and Barbados….
Walking Along the Beach
Two Canadian tourists admitted to seeing Amy walking along a beach in Curaçao the very year she disappeared. They explained that the woman’s tattoos looked just like Amy’s: a Tasmanian Devil on her shoulder, a sun on her lower back, a Chinese symbol located on her right ankle, and a Gecko lizard on her navel.
Calling for Help
The tourists told the police about the sighting and explained that once she had heard them speaking in English, she had run toward them, trying to talk. She had been trying to find the words, to tell them she needed help, but a moment later, two men grabbed her and threw her inside a nearby cafe. And this wasn’t the last sighting either…
A year later, in 1999, an American Naval officer visiting a brothel in Curaçao happened upon a woman with the very same tattoos as the Canadians had seen. She was quickly pulled away by another strange man, but not before telling the officer that her name was Amy Bradley and that she needed his help.
Amy was sighted again In 2005, when a woman named Judy Mawer saw her in a department store bathroom in Barbados. Judy had seen the woman, possibly Amy, being screamed at by an angry man in the stall next to her. She feared for her own life but kept quiet, hoping that the man would go soon. Once he was gone, she exited the stall…
My Name is Amy
Judy exited the stall and beheld a terrified woman in her 30’s hunched over the sink. She tried to console her and asked what the girl’s name was. She told her that her name was Amy and that she was originally from Virginia. Before she could get any more info, however, Amy left.
Sold Into Sex Slavery
Many of these sightings seem to point to one conclusion: Amy had been kidnapped from the cruise ship and sold as a sex slave in the Caribbean slave trade. In November 2005, Amy’s parents appeared on the Dr. Phil Show. They had recently been anonymously emailed a photograph of a girl that looked very much like Amy….
The photo showed woman, who looked almost exactly like Amy, posing in a sexually suggestive manner. Since then, Amy’s parents have stopped looking for her. They believe that she may no longer be involved in sex trafficking but might be in even worse trouble, or perhaps had been killed because people were getting too close to the truth.
A Massive Reward
Still, Amy’s parents have still maintained their initial offer of a $250,000 reward to anyone who provides information leading to the safe return of their daughter, Amy Lynn Bradley. If anyone has any information on her current whereabouts please contact 804-276-2204 with tips.