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Tsunami Jewish Deaf Survivor

Imagine going down underwater and then when you came up to surface, you find the world re-shaped? This is what happened to Naomi Hayim, a Jewish Deaf dive master and marine biologist who was lucky to escape the wrath of the major tsunami event on December 26, 2004 that originated from the coast of Indonesia. The tsunami has claimed more than 150,000 lives and has affected many countries in the Indian Ocean.

Naomi is a member of the World Wide Dive and Sail organization owned by Netherlander Frank van der Linde. She became deaf after a meningitis bout in her infancy and grew up in London's Maida Vale area. Naomi was fascinated with sea life since she was young. After graduating from Queen Mary, University of London with a degree in marine and freshwater biology, Naomi continued her pursuits for a few months by studying clown fish and sea anemones at the Institute of Marine Biology in Eliat, Israel. She met Frank at Koh Tao, Thailand and have worked together as a team leading expeditions on the organization's 21-meter SY Sampai Jumpa yacht. This 1998-manufactured boat sails around nine islands in the Andaman Sea off Thailand's western coast.

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