LEBANON: Wreck of the Champollion

LEBANON Wreck of the Champollion

The 12,546-ton French liner Champollion plowed through the squally eastern Mediterranean one day last week on course for Beirut, capital of Lebanon. Aboard were 111 passengers, most of them Christmas pilgrims bound for the Holy Land, and 212 crewmen skippered by Captain Henri Bourde, a taciturn French salt who knows the Levantine seas like the back of his gnarly hand.

As dawn flushed the snow on the mountains of Lebanon, one of the passengers, Robert Bagarry, went on deck to watch the lights of his home town, Beirut, twinkling on the starboard bow. "We were heading north,"...

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