AP International

Family of US publishing exec killed in Italy boat collision urges full investigation, accountability

ROME (AP) — The family of a U.S. publishing executive killed in a boating collision in southern Italy is urging Italian authorities to fully investigate the death and hold accountable anyone responsible.

“We are cooperating with the Italian authorities in their investigations, and will continue to do so until they conclude,” said the statement late Thursday to The Associated Press by Mike White, husband of Adrienne Vaughan, on behalf of their family.

Vaughan, the 45-year-old president of Bloomsbury Publishing’s U.S. branch, was killed Aug. 3 when the rented motorboat her family had hired slammed into a chartered sailboat off the Amalfi Coast.

The motorboat’s skipper is under investigation for suspected manslaughter and causing a shipwreck, prosecutors have said. No charges have yet been announced.

Salerno Prosecutor Giuseppe Borrelli said Aug. 5 that Vaughan was sunning herself on the boat’s bow and bounced into the water at the moment of impact. Two doctors who were among the passengers on the sailboat dived into the sea to try to help and a nearby vessel brought her to shore, but Vaughan died before she could be taken to the hospital.

Graphic novels are displayed for sale at a bookstore in New York City on Sunday, October 8, 2023. On Tuesday, the Commerce Department releases U.S. retail sales data for September. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)
Graphic novels are displayed for sale at a bookstore in New York City on Sunday, October 8, 2023. On Tuesday, the Commerce Department releases U.S. retail sales data for September. (AP Photo/Ted Shaffrey)

White and the motorboat’s skipper were injured; the family’s two children were unharmed.

In the statement issued by a spokesman, White said Vaughan’s death had devastated the family. “Her absence from our lives and the terrible circumstances of her death are impossible to comprehend,” he said.

“We look to the Italian authorities to fully investigate the circumstances leading to Adrienne’s death, to ascertain where responsibility for this lies, and to ensure that any person who is found to bear responsibility is held accountable under the Italian criminal justice system,” he said, adding a request for privacy for the family.

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