With some virtual help, Key West diver finds valuable coin in ship wreckage

From News Press


Soon after the 523-foot warship Hoyt S. Vandenberg was sunk as an artificial reef off Key West, documentary filmmaker Pat Clyne hid a $2,400 silver coin from the 17th-century aboard the Spanish galleon Nuestra Senora de Atocha.

Anyone finding the coin could keep it, and on Saturday, almost two years later, Key West diver Randy Pekarik found it in a corridor beneath the ship’s bridge at a depth of 97 feet.

To aid in the search, Clyne posted a series of clues on his YouTube site.

“I started following the clues, but it’s a huge ship,” said Pekarik, who made more than 30 dives looking for the coin.

“Even though the first clues eliminated three-quarters of the ship, that’s still a humongous amount of ship.

It was like finding a needle in a haystack.”

warship galleon Nuestra Señora de Atocha Key West

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