It was a trip of a lifetime. A Mother's Day gift from her son. A getaway to the Dominican Republic.
"I was really excited. He told me I didn't have to pay anything. I was proud of him," said Sherrie, who does not want her last name used.
In the beginning, it was a dream trip — until it wasn't.
"That's where it went from a great time to one of the scariest times of my life," admitted Sherrie.
She noticed during the trip that bartenders singled her out.
"They were bringing me shots of liquor, and they were trying to get me to drink it."
The Milwaukee native was courteous, but they did not see her dump the drinks in the ocean.
Totally sober, Sherrie left the boat for a swim.
"I feel there's a swish where someone grabs me from behind. I turned around, and I see it's the captain on the boat. I'm like trying to pull away and he's like fondle me."
"As soon as he grabbed me, the music on the boat was extremely loud!"
"I started splashing water, screaming for help!"
A group of women noticed her struggle.
"I'm thinking in my head how am I going to get out of this? How am I going to get out of this?"
"Some girls came from around. I started splashing again. The look of terror had to be on my face. I started splashing because one of the girls she kept turning around."
"She realized I was saying help. Her and about four other girls came and grabbed me."
"That's where it went from a great time to one of the scariest times of my life." — Sherrie, who received a scare in the Dominican Republic
Tauvia Blue of Atlanta chatted with TODAY'S TMJ4 by phone.
"I saw the look of terror in her eyes. She was clearly in distress."
The group made a point not to complain loudly out of fear of revenge.
Sherrie explained, "if you went overboard, no one would know because getting on the boat you weren't accounted for."
They got back to the hotel and notified authorities.
"The hotel said we'll take note, but you have to report it to the excursion people, and the excursion people report it to police."
So, Sherrie contacted the excursion people.
"I said, 'Do I get a police report?' They said no. They don't do the police report, but they're going to fire the captain and the other people on the boat."
TODAY'S TMJ4 reached out to the emergency number on her reservation but did not get an answer.
TODAY'S TMJ4 received a statement from Nexus Tours that was given to Sunwing Media:
“Ensuring our customers safety and wellbeing is our main concern and our team carefully vets every tour that we sell to ensure that it meets if not surpasses local operating standards. We have reviewed the incident report filed in May, when our customer shared her concerns with us, and we can confirm that these were relayed to the boat operator immediately. The operator responded promptly seeking more information to ascertain which crew member had been involved as normally the captain remains in wheelhouse from where he steers the boat. It is noted in our report that our customer had since returned home once this reply had been received and our representative was unsuccessful in his attempts to contact her. We have verified our correspondence to date and can find no further record of our customer having contacted us in this regard. Our team is trained in dealing with sensitive issues such as this one and it is our policy to thoroughly investigate every alleged incident of this nature. We will continue to pursue this matter once we have more details from our customer.”
Ultimately for Sherrie, her number one goal was to make it back to Milwaukee safely.
"You know I'm just prayerful that me and my son made it home and I'm never going back."