When the smuggler’s boat sank a dozen miles off Egypt’s Mediterranean coast, 17-year-old Attia Abdu Qamary fell into the choppy water with hundreds of other frightened migrants.
More than half looked like him -- teenage boys. Many had left their north coast fishing villages where the Nile River meets the sea in hopes of starting more promising lives in Italy, and sending desperately needed money home. Many had been traveling below deck in an area used for storing fish.
Attia, a wiry, strong swimmer, heard some of them cry out.
“Help me, I’m dying!”