Sailors’ Society mourns loss of regional superintendent in India

International maritime charity Sailors’ Society is mourning the loss of its regional superintendent in India, Pastor Joseph Chacko who died earlier today (21 February) in a traffic collision in Gandhidham along with his wife Leena and Meru Kaku, a driver at the Deendayal Seafarers’ Centre.

Joseph, who was 54, joined Sailors’ Society in 2012 and was instrumental in the foundation of the Deendayal Seafarers’ Centre.

He was also responsible for setting up ear and eye testing within the centre, which has helped hundreds of seafarers by identifying medical issues before they became potentially career threatening.

In 2016, Joseph was nominated for the International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network’s (ISWAN) Dr Dierk Lindemann Welfare Personality of the Year, for his outstanding contribution to seafarers’ welfare.

Stuart Rivers, Sailors’ Society’s CEO, said: “Joseph was a true friend to seafarers and a champion of improving their health and well-being.

“He worked tirelessly to better seafarers’ welfare not just in India but beyond.

“He and Leena, who was a great support to her husband in his welfare work, are a great loss to the Society and the wider maritime community and our thoughts and prayers are with their family.”

Joseph and Leena’s funerals will take place on Friday (23 February).


Notes to Editors:


Pastor Joseph Chacko (second from right) with one of the many seafaring families he supported

About Sailors’ Society

Sailors’ Society aims to transform the lives of seafarers and their families at home, in port and at sea through the delivery of chaplaincy, education and the relief of poverty and distress.

The charity works internationally to provide practical, emotional and spiritual welfare support to the world’s 1.6m seafarers, regardless of background or faith. Sailors’ Society chaplains and ship visitors have a presence in 91 global ports, with wider projects and services covering 29 countries. For more information please visit