The Sea: The Bluebelle's Last Voyage

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With Terry Jo's testimony, other disclosures of the dark side of Julian Harvey's life began to appear. At the time of the drowning of Second Wife Joann Harvey, the Florida police, the diver who inspected the sunken wreck of the 1946 Plymouth, and Joann's father wondered at Harvey's agility in getting out of the car unscratched and at his failure to try to rescue his wife and mother-in-law after his own escape. Said Diver Steve Dacosta: "At that speed and short distance, it seemed unlikely that a man could get out of the car before it struck the water, unless he was ready to get out of it."

Other late-blooming suspicions were cast on the wreck of the Torbatross. Last week David P. Harrison, one of Harvey's passengers on that trip, reported: "I remember we sailed around the wreck twice. Harvey said he was trying to read the markings on the buoy." Said Jack Stone, former commodore of the Capital Yacht Club, home berth of the Torbatross: "Everybody who has sailed those waters knows about the Texas and just stays away from her. The wreck is way off course. You have to work at it to find her." Yet a federal court awarded Harvey $14,258 damages for the loss of Torbatross. And last week, after his return from the Bluebelle tragedy, Harvey confided to friends in Miami that he had scuttled Valiant for the insurance.

Harvey, it turned out, had been married six times, and his surviving ex-wives agreed that he was a vain, difficult husband, and a man whose love quickly cooled. Reported Wife No. 1, now remarried to a Fort Myers, Fla., businessman: "I don't think I satisfied him. I don't think any woman could. He was very egotistical. He worried about himself. He weight-lifted a lot." Said No. 3, now married to a Dallas doctor: "I don't know which wife I was. It wasn't like being married anyhow. He was constantly interested in his body."

Most damning was the revelation that Harvey was deeply in debt and being dunned by his creditors—and that he insured Mary Harvey's life with a $20,000, double-indemnity policy two months before Bluebelle sailed on her last cruise. But the full story of Julian Harvey and what happened aboard the Bluebelle on its last night at sea will probably never be known. And, but for the miraculous rescue of a little girl, it would probably never have been even a half-told saga of the sea.

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