After a nightmare of a vacation, Lisa Miller is making her way back to Columbus – and her family -- on Friday.
Miller remembers the moment when her dream vacation took a turn for the worse.
“We opened the door, the hallways were just filled with smoke... That's when the panic kind of set in. We all made our way out to the deck and once we were outside, we could just see black smoke billowing," she said.
A few hours later, the mother of four said the cruise ship, containing 3,000 passengers and 1,000 crew members, lost power.
"It was so hot and smelly,” she said. ‘From the sewage in the hallways from the people's bathrooms that we took our mattresses out of our rooms, our blankets, our sheets, you name it, whatever we could grab.”
Overflowing toilets, foul smells, and food shortages marked the five days Triumph passengers were trapped at sea.
"To stand two hours in the food line, and then to get there and them run out and give you cucumbers and onions on bread as a sandwich -- it was frustrating at times," Miller said.
However, she said those dark hours aboard the ship brought out the best in some people. She saw young people helped the elderly, families share baby formula with others in short supply.
It wasn't until the third day with still no tugboats in sight, that Miller said she started to lose hope.
"We really feel like they could have gotten tow boats there earlier, had some kind of response, or losing contact with family members for two days. That was the hard part,” she said.
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