98-year-old Triumph passenger happy to be home

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by Brad Woodard / KHOU 11 News

WHAS11.com

Posted on February 16, 2013 at 9:24 AM

HOUSTON -- Taking a cruise was supposed to be a girls’ get away and a chance to bond. But their voyage on Carnival Triumph wasn’t exactly what they had in mind.

“Yeah, I guess we got a lot closer this trip,” said Shawna Robinson.

It was much closer than Robinson and her friend, Donnell King, would have liked.

“We were told that if we had to go to the bathroom to pour our urine down the shower,” said Robinson.

“You had an array of different smells in the boat,” said King.

Yet, they were still better off than their friends.

“Their rooms were getting flooded,” said Robinson. “I don’t know what it was from. Their carpet was soaked, and when you laid a white towel down, it would turn yellow.”

Beyond the leaking sewage and lack of food and water, King found something even more troubling.

“The most disturbing thing would probably be the elderly,” said King.

Among those on board was 98-year-old Sian Tjia of Missouri City. Despite his age, he seems to have taken everything in stride.

“There was a big alarm. We were told to get out and bring our life jackets,” said Tjia. “I was like, ‘oh my God. This must be the second Titanic.”’

One thing is for certain, some 2,300 passengers will have lasting memories of their time onboard the Triumph -- just not cherished memories.

“It was the cruise from Hell,” said Robinson.

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