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Associated Press
Jan 3, 2007, 4:40 PM EST


ST. GEORGE'S, Grenada (AP) -Laura Gainey had been ordered to go below deck moments before a giant wave swept her into the Atlantic Ocean, the ship's captain said Wednesday.

The daughter of Bob Gainey, the hockey great and general manger of the Montreal Canadiens, was a volunteer crew member on the Picton Castle. She was wearing protective clothing but no lifejacket on the night of Dec. 8 when she went overboard about 475 miles off Cape Cod.

"She had been ordered to go below and moments later, the incident happened," captain Daniel Moreland told The Associated Press.

Moreland, who joined the crew after the loss of the 25-year-old Gainey, said he didn't know why she was above deck during rough weather. She had responsibility for certain watches and instruction of volunteer trainees.

Nobody saw the wave that knocked her into the ocean, but the crew immediately began rescue attempts after she was spotted in the water, Moreland said. Air and sea crews were unable to find her after a three-day search.

Michael Vogelsgesang, the captain who was in command at the time, has left the ship and is on leave during its winter program, Moreland said.

An investigation of Gainey's death was commissioned by the Cook Islands, the South Pacific nation where the ship is registered. The official leading the probe, Andrew Scheer, has interviewed crew members and "there will be further deliberations," Moreland said.

Maureen Newby, Bob Gainey's sister, told The Canadian Press on Wednesday that the family hopes to learn more about the accident.

"It makes sense to me that it's investigated, because I have to ask, as a citizen, why was she not in a lifejacket? Why was she not tied to the boat?" Newby said.

The 180-foot-tall Picton Castle completed its voyage from Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, to the Caribbean island of Grenada on Wednesday.

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