Cruise Control-author Mann commits suicide

POSTED: 12/2/14 7:01 PM

St. Maarten – The American man discovered dead at his Dawn Beach home has been identified as 56-year old J. Michael Mann – author of Cruise Control, a boom about the cost of cruise tourism to the ecology in the Caribbean and a veteran timeshare salesman. He was working on a new book. Police found his body on Friday morning.

Neighbors say the man committed suicide and was discovered in the gated community at approximately 10 am. Reports indicated that Mann took his life sometime between Monday night and early Tuesday morning after locking himself in his bedroom and repeatedly stabbing himself. He left a suicide note which was signed at the bottom, “DNR” (do not resuscitate). The unsettling discovery was made when a gardener in the gated community saw hordes of flies near Mann’s residence. After drawing closer, the gardener smelt a putrid odor and alerted the landlord. The landlord of the complex that Mann occupied gained entry where he and the gardener discovered Mann naked and lifeless.

“Based on the condition of the corpse and the amount of flies in the room, he was estimated to have been dead for 3 days. The police were called in and confiscated the body. We do not know when it will be released but we do not suspect any foul play, especially since the place was locked up tight from the inside and there was also a note,” a friend of the deceased said. “Michael had a lot of struggles and I can’t help thinking that in his last hours he may have been trying to reach me. He used to say he might as well make a cocktail of pills and vodka and be gone than live in pain, but we always tried to tell him that there was a better way,” the distraught close friend added.

Mann lived in various parts of the Caribbean for the past 23 years, from St. Thomas to The Cayman Islands to St. Lucia to St. Maarten but was originally from Virginia. He worked in the timeshare industry as a veteran salesman and closer. From the early 90s he worked at Flamingo Beach Resort and Atrium Resort. Earlier this year he was employed at the Westin Dawn Beach Club and shortly before his demise, the Oyster Bay Beach Resort.

His former colleagues at travel club, Exclusive Vacations explained that Mann was known to suffer with severe depression, stress and debilitating pain about the body following an accident years prior. They said they had suggested counseling on several occasions but all efforts proved futile. After news spread of his death, they took to social media site Facebook to console each other and to make plans for a memorial in Mann’s honor.

Mann was featured in the July 2 edition of the Today newspaper after publishing a book called “Cruise Control” on the cost of cruise tourism to Caribbean’s ecology and drift net fishing. He was described as an avid reader, researcher and story teller. Mann also possessed extensive knowledge of the history and development of the region. He was in the process of penning a new book called Jeb- The Life of a Pirate Dog.

He had no known relatives in St. Maarten and is said to be survived by his step mother in USA. He dedicated his life to the welfare of animals and the environment. As police continue investigations, his funeral and final resting place are still to be ascertained. For more information on his memorial, persons are asked to contact Raymond on telephone number 550-3864.


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Comments (1)


  1. lorraine gaudet says:

    my name is Lorraine gaudet. I was Michael Mann first love back when I was 15 . on November 23rd he left me 3 voicemails I was at work and I couldn’t answer the phone . and I’ve been afraid to get in touch with beverly at the Oyster Bay Beach Resort resort . he does have a mother and she lives in Carolina USA. and yes my name appears in his book and I still have childhood pictures of him and yes my son’s name is Jason. I still love michael very much!!