A Porthmadog man has been found dead in his boat during his latest fundraising challenge.

Michael Holt, 54, originally from Porthmadog but now living on the Wirral, was rowing 3,000 miles from Spain’s Gran Canaria to Barbados.

He set off on 27 January and was doing well but Michael, who had Type 1 diabetes, took ill last week. Updates on Facebook said he thought it was sea sickness. He took a break from rowing to recover and seemed to be okay but two days ago efforts to communicate with him went unanswered.

Sadly, on Sunday night, Michael’s brother David said on Facebook: “Last night the fishing vessel Noruego accepted a tasking from Cape Verde Joint Rescue Coordination Centre and made directly for Michael’s coordinates. Very sadly, upon arrival, Michael was found dead inside his cabin.

“Of course this was not the ultimate conclusion we were looking for, but I am somewhat comforted knowing he died doing something he absolutely wanted to do with a passion and managed to row in excess of 700 miles in the process. An achievement in itself.

“This is a huge shock to myself, his wife Lynne and daughter Scarlett and my parents, not to mention wider family and friends. Many thanks for the kind words and wishes that you have already sent us during the past few days. They mean a great deal to all the family.”

Porthmadog Football Club shared the post on their Facebook page. Michael was raising money for Mind and Liverpool Charity and Voluntary Services during this row, but last summer the Porthmadog FC fan rowed solo across the Irish Sea from Porthmadog Harbour to Wicklow and back to raise money for the club.

He used the challenge as preparation for this challenge across the Atlantic.

Mike is a Type 1 Diabetic and had to undergo double reconstructive surgery to both his shoulders in 2015, a treatment which involved putting some 20 titanium rods into his body.