SAN SALVADOR — Overcome with emotion, castaway Jose Salvador Alvarenga arrived home to El Salvador late Tuesday and was quickly whisked away to a hospital.
After a brief appearance at an airport press conference, the 37-year-old shark fisherman who claims to have spent more than a year lost at sea was loaded into an ambulance and driven away.
On the flight from Los Angeles to San Salvador — the last leg of a journey that began Monday in the Marshall Islands — Alvarenga complained that he was feeling ill.
Alvarenga's health has seemed precarious since he washed up on a remote Pacific atoll in a battered 24-foot fishing boat almost two weeks ago.
He claims that after being swept out to sea by a storm, he survived month after month on raw fish and other sea creatures, quenching his thirst with rainwater and his own urine.
Officials have said he was dehydrated from his oceanic odyssey, but he has also displayed difficulty walking and complained of swollen joints, aches and pains, and mental confusion.