Couple stranded in Mexico after kicked off cruise ship for medical emergency

WHIPPANY, N.J. – Carol Palk was sick and bleeding from an ulcer in her stomach riding in the back of a cab during a five-hour trip through a dangerous Mexican state, so that she and her husband could catch a plane that would eventually fly them back to the United States via Mexico City.

Neither Carol nor her husband, Bertram “Buzz” Palk, can speak Spanish, so they could not communicate beyond showing their driver their airline tickets.  

Hours earlier, she and her husband were marooned on a foreign shore by the crew of their cruise ship because they could not treat her ulcer.

Carol Palk, a 79-year-old from Whippany, was sailing on the Allure of the Seas, a Royal Caribbean Cruises ship registered in the Bahamas but sailing out of Miami, with her husband and friends from their Rotary Club. The seven-night cruise, which stopped in ports throughout the western Caribbean Sea, was the couple’s 16th cruise vacation.

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