British hostage couple released, only to find news of family member dying

British hostage couple released, only to find news of family member dying
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Monday, November 15, 2010 - 9:31am

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- Paul and Rachel Chandler - the British couple held hostage by Somali pirates for 388 days - have been given the news that Paul Chandler's father died while the pair was in captivity, the couple said Monday.

The Chandlers awoke Monday to their first full day of freedom since their October 2009 hijacking off the coast of East Africa.  They asked in a statement that they be given space and privacy.  "We have just learned that Paul's father died in late July, and we obviously need to come to terms with that," the statement said.

The couple said they would soon travel from Kenya, where they spent Sunday night, to the U.K.  The retired British couple were sailing the world on a 38-foot-yacht that represented most of their life savings when Somali pirates captured them last year near the island nation of Seychelles.

Pirates released the couple Sunday morning, ending one of the most dramatic and drawn-out hostage situations since pirate attacks spiked off East Africa.

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