Revealed: Below Deck Sailing Yacht Captain Glenn Shephard’s Shocking History

Below Deck Sailing Yacht's Captian Glenn Shepard at the helm.
Photo Credit: Karolina Wojtasik via Getty Images

The Parsifal III has sailed on Below Deck Sailing Yacht for all four seasons thus far. In each, Captain Glenn Shephard has steered this often temperamental vessel from its wheelhouse, when not enjoying massive crackers in its galley. He’s comfortable on this yacht, which tracks since he’s been the Captain of Parsifal III for over 13 years now. Yet, long before he brought this boat onto Bravo, he and the Parsifal III made shocking, environmentally disastrous headlines together, which sucks.

We all know that in BDSY Season 2, Captain Glenn encountered strong winds, as the Parsifal III sat docked. These winds sent the sailing yacht crashing into the dock, as the deck team scrambled to save what they could. Thankfully, the damage to the Parsifal III was minimal. The dock, however, saw the yacht’s insurance company stepping up, as these costs were slightly higher.

This was a classic case of a filmed accident, which got taken care of straight away. But there was another crash many, many years ago, which saw the Parsifal III grounding, destroying a reef, and then fleeing the scene. Now, of course, two sides to this narrative exist. All the same, the damages that went down on Captain Glenn’s watch were shocking and very, very real.

Captain Glenn Shephard’s Carrot Shoal crash

In 2013, the Parsifal III crashed into Carrot Shoal. Just an FYI, if you map-meh like me, this area is located in the Virgin Islands. As a result, the keel became damaged. But the worst part was that approximately 30 tons of lead-shot ballast spilled out, coating the reef in turn.

Making matters even worse, as the BVI Beacon reported on (which Reddit then shared), the crews onboard allegedly sailed away with the Parsifal III, taking her over to St. Thomas for repairs. Apparently, they did so without reporting this incident to the Virgin Island authorities. Only after the island’s government launched an investigation did the captain report this spill, but his report arrived almost two months after it had even happened, which is wild.

On top of this, the article also states that “E-mails sent to the captain of the vessel, Glen Shepherd [sic], after the incident were unanswered.” June, June, Captain Glenn, what’s up, bruh? Had this been Malia White, she would have documented the shiz outta this mess. Because she doesn’t play around with Maritime Law.

Sadly, Carrot Shoal, a once thriving reef, will never be the same again. Dr. Shannon Gore, a well-respected marine biologist, wrote a report on this just a few beats later, writing that “Aside from large broken fragments of rock from the impact of the keel, a large area of Benthic species — corals, algae, sponge, invertebrates, etc. — were destroyed from being smothered by either rock fragments or lead.”

Hate to hear it. Florida girl here. Our oceans are a vital part of our ecosystem. While I can accept that accidents happen, I can’t accept that this one took months to even report.

Or did it?

The Parsifal III’s shareholders’ conflicting response

Rene Sindlev, one of the Parsifal III’s two 50-percent shareholders, offered a quote that clashes with the original report, saying “I was informed as a shareholder about the accident shortly after it happened. I understood we took immediate action and the insurance company likewise,” he wrote via an e-mail to the same news outlet above, adding, “Parsifal 3 never neglected the responsibility neither took a passive role in helping to clean up. Divers [were sent] to hover and clean the waisted [sic] area immediately.”

However, the court records state that Captain Glenn reported this grounding only after the island’s government launched their investigation. And again, this report arrived two months after this crash had even taken place. I guess the word immediate is a tricky one to grasp, eh?

Seems like that’s a yes, as Rene, when told about these conflicting narratives, stated that he was “totally unaware” of these court findings. Turns out, Rene wasn’t tight with the other shareholder at the time of this incident. So the details of this entire ordeal are a bit murky on his end.

You know what else is still murky? The waters around Carrot Shoal. Because the clean-up efforts have since stalled due to a lack of funding.

The verdict of Captain Glenn Shephard’s crash

Bravo's Captain Glenn Shephard of Below Deck Sailing Yacht.
Photo Credit: Fred Jagueneau/Bravo

Five years later, the Parsifal III’s lawyers managed to skate away from more than $1 million worth of potential liability in this matter. Instead, they only had to pay out about $250,000, according to the case’s judgment. Hopefully, great lessons were still learned though. I’d hate to see Captain Glenn make any further questionable decisions, both on Bravo and off, because when it comes to our oceans, preservation is key.