According to journalist Richard Conn, on 20 April 2014 “Trans-Atlantic kayaker arrives in New Smyrna Beach after 6,000 mile journey.” Conn reported “Aleksander “Olek” Doba arrives Saturday in New Smyrna Beach after paddling more than 6,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean.”
Mr. Doba arrived “To the cheers of supporters” after completing an epic journey across the perilous Atlantic Ocean from Lisbon, Portugal to New Smyrna Beach, Florida.
“Doba left Lisbon, Portugal, according to Conn, “and battled storms, mechanical problems and open-water winds that forced him off course in the 21-foot vessel powered only by his sinewy arms and broad shoulders.” He arrived “Sporting a beard that looks like Tom Hanks’ in the movie “Castaway,” he pushed together his index finger and thumb to show how long he slept Friday night.”
Cheering crowd and other well-wishers greeted Mr. Doba like a conquering hero.
Adam Barrringer, Mayor of New Smyrna Beach called Doba “Alexander the Great.” After shaking his hand, “Barringer read a proclamation in Doba's honor and presented him with a bottle of champagne on behalf of the city.”
According to Richard Conn, “The entire City Commission and Volusia County Councilwoman Deb Denys were part of the welcoming party.”