It Was No Queen Mary

He's already thrown out the first pitch at a Red Sox game and met the president.

Up next for Capt. Richard Phillips -- the Queen Mary.

Phillips, the cargo ship captain rescued by U.S. Navy SEALs  while held hostage by Somali pirates aboard a lifeboat bobbing in the Indian  Ocean, will board the Queen Mary in Long Beach Wednesday. Phillips and his family were given an all-expenses-paid  vacation in Southern California aboard the Queen Mary by its operators and  JetBlue Airways.

Executives of the Queen -- a retired ocean liner now serving as a hotel  and tourist attraction -- said they decided to offer Phillips the free vacation  after a television interview in which he was asked about his time in captivity  aboard a 28-foot lifeboat. "It was no Queen Mary," he responded.

Phillips was captaining the MV Maersk Alabama off the coast of East  Africa in April when the container ship was attacked by pirates. After pirates  boarded his ship, triggering a battle with the crew, Phillips struck a deal and  agreed to board a lifeboat with the pirates in exchange for his crew's safety.

He was held captive for about four days while talks dragged on between  American negotiators and the pirates.

On the evening of April 12, Navy SEAL sharpshooters deployed on the  fantail of the guided-missile destroyer USS Bainbridge after parachuting to the  area shot and killed three of Phillips' captors. Only one of the pirates  survived. He remains jailed in New York awaiting trial.


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