WATCH WHAT HAPPENS LIVE WITH ANDY COHEN -- Episode 17002 -- Pictured: Captain Lee Rosbach -- (Photo by: Charles Sykes/Bravo)

Below Deck Star Captain Lee Rosbach Confirms He Did Not Retire; Says He “Was Not Invited Back” For Season 11

Below Deck Season 10 isn’t one any fan will forget soon. It was the end of an era and the continuation of two captains not historically getting along. Captain Lee Rosbach is arguably the most famous water vessel operator on the maritime franchise.

That’s why it was a real kick in the pants for both Captain Lee and his followers. After suffering from medical issues, Lee took some time off to recover and brought Captain Sandy Yawn in to temporarily replace him.

When the season ended on a sour note for both captains and left an unhappy crew, Bravo canceled the reunion. Instead, Below Deck viewers were told of a special show as a tribute to Captain Lee. His imminent retirement was advertised and a big send-off was planned to celebrate.

Now Lee admits his “retirement” was breaking news to him. Not only did he not retire, he confirmed he wasn’t asked to film Season 11. The Sun Sentinel has details.

The day before Lee flew to St. Lucia to start filming Season 10, he felt a “shooting pain” in his leg. He sought medical care and asked his doc to do whatever it takes to get him to the boat. After a brief delay but no official diagnosis, Lee joined production with “a cornucopia of drugs” for pain management.

RELATED: Below Deck Star Captain Lee Rosbach Calls Captain Sandy Yawn Out For Lack Of “Procedure And Respect” After Camille Lamb’s Termination

Lee said the crew was extremely supportive and tended to his needs. He even had to have someone help him get dressed. It was that bad. His pain did not improve as the days went on and he was clearly struggling. That’s when one of the big guys at Bravo asked Lee to have a chat.

Captain Lee told the executive, “Well, if I’m going to be totally honest, I have to say that right now I am more of a liability to the crew and to the show than I am an asset.” He added, “I’d been thinking it, but to admit it out loud? Yeah, that took a lot. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. It broke my heart.”

Instead of taking the remainder of the charter season to improve, Lee ultimately returned to his job. He said, “You have to check your ego at the dock. You have a job to do. And if I had to use a crutch to do it, then so be it. Quitting is something that’s just so foreign to me. And I promised the crew that I’d be back before the season was over. I gave my word. I always keep my word. If I’m not keeping my word, then I’m close to dead,” Lee added.

Lee’s determination, commitment, and loyalty to his job were demonstrated. Naturally, he was shocked when a producer told him he would not be included in Season 11 of Below Deck. He shared, “I did not quit. I did not retire.” He continued, “I was just not invited back. I guess I can see their point of view. They really couldn’t get a straight answer from anyone on how my health was.” Lee also noted his physicians haven’t been able to tell him anything beyond it’s “a nerve issue.”

Captain Lee is still currently under contract at Bravo. He has not been fired. Lee said, “We came to an agreement, and I’m going to be doing some things for them in the next year. Then, Season 12? I imagine they are going to see what happens with Season 11, with somebody new trying to take over for me, see how they do. If it’s too expensive for them, we’ll see what happens. If the numbers take a tank, would I go back? Yeah.”

Don’t count Lee out yet. There just might be another chapter in his book. I don’t think what Bravo did was out of malice or bad intent. This was a vulnerable season for Lee and it appears the network might appreciate him as much as we do.


[Photo Credit: Charles Sykes/Bravo]