Wes From ‘Below Deck’ Said He Felt Blindsided During That Final Night – ‘She Has Never Said I’m Sorry’

Wes O’Dell from Below Deck said Rayna Lindsey was completely in the right for reacting when Heather Chase said the N-word. But at the same time, O’Dell wished instead of fighting, everyone could have had a conversation that may have given them a pathway to some sort of resolution and understanding.

Instead, he was completely blindsided when Lindsey lashed out at him during that final night. O’Dell has yet to receive an apology from Lindsey after she said he wasn’t Black and didn’t understand the situation.

“Calling me not Black is painful,” O’Dell said in a confessional. “You’re going to throw me away, someone who has wanted to help you? Yeah, I’m deeply hurt about that.”

Wes from ‘Below Deck’ didn’t anticipate that Rayna would lash out at him

“Going through all of it, it was hurtful. I didn’t expect it. I didn’t see that coming. So I was just blindsided,” he said about Lindsey’s attack on the Gangplank Report.

Wes O'Dell 'Below Deck' Season 9 cast photo
Wes O’Dell from Below Deck |Laurent Bassett/Bravo

“It came from a point of observation,” he said, referring to when Chase said the N-word. “First, I truly wanted to see how Heather was going to handle all of this. If she was going to instinctively defend herself or was she going to fess up to it? And it took some time.”

“You guys saw it happening one right after another. [But] it was like a good couple of days before everybody knew what happened. I was still in the dark with a lot of details until about three days later. I knew she had said the N-word. But the context was not shared with me until a bit later. It was lyrics and then the bathroom situation as they were walking back.”

“And the reason I always stuck with context is when you have something coming in a malicious act or something out of a place of hate. There’s a difference between being litty titty and making a mistake. And a mistake that should never happen. But in her defense, she messed up and she messed up on live TV, which is stupid,” he said.

Wes said he’s also experienced racism

He agreed that Chase admitted her mistake. “And when she did admit it, I’m still at the observation stage. It’s like what more can there be done? At this point, after everybody is aware of it, it’s going to be shown. Now it’s up to the public to make their own decisions. And sadly, judge of all of this. Judge of her character and judge of her as a person.”

O’Dell also shared more about his background. While he was brought up in St. Thomas he went to school in the United States. So he has experienced racism in the US, which Lindsey had previously dismissed. He added, “My father’s white and my mom’s Black,” O’Dell said.

“So I know the difference between when somebody is coming from a place of hate,” he said. “I don’t accept it. I don’t agree with it. And it’s not a thing anybody should do. But when it’s said in lyrics, and somebody is hammered drunk doing this. No, I don’t respect the person. We’re going to hang out with them and do like – no, of course not. But I will tell them about it’s like – not cool. That’s something you shouldn’t ever do. To understand what that means for me and the rest of my people. You can’t say this because of the history of what that word means to everybody.”

He truly hoped he could have connected with Rayna on the last ‘Below Deck’ night

After mounting tension on the boat, O’Dell thought that he could possibly connect with Lindsey during that heated moment. But, “When it came out of Rayna’s mouth, what she said to me, I wasn’t taken aback from what she said by not calling me Black and not understanding all this different stuff. I was more taken aback that I felt in that situation being the only two Black people on the yacht and in a very non-diverse industry, yachting, sailing – anything with boats. I thought I was that confident or that friend she could rely on and would be able to talk to.”

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“And that’s why I talked to her and said, ‘Let’s stop this. Quit it.’ Tried to end all of that stuff on our last night out. I thought my words would get through to her. And she would understand it.” He added, “She hasn’t said, I’m sorry. Or it was uncalled for or tried to explain it. She has reached out to me through Instagram, but that was after our reunion.”

Wes reflected on how Eddie Lucas handled the situation

He also reflected on the backlash first officer Eddie Lucas took for how he handled the situation. “I think that he had so much on his table with learning a new position and still thinking of himself as deck because he was that much on deck,” O’Dell said.

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“Because Jake was the lead deckhand, but still that was his first time at that position,” he remarked. “So he’s working through his own leadership skills as well. And personally, I don’t really know about [motor] yachts, so I was not the right fit.”

“But I can delegate crew and work with people to make it smooth over very well as long as you have that title behind your person to make sure people listen. [Lucas] had a lot on his table. And he’s worried about his job and worried about [Captain ]Lee [Rosbach] and is also worrying about the deck crew and interior. It’s just a lot for him as well.”

Differences should be respected, Wes said

O’Dell had some final thoughts about how differences should be respected and celebrated. “But this is not just Black and white. You have every nationality onboard yachts,” he said. “And it’s not just with yachts. You have different sexual preferences. Different sexes. We can all come from a place of empathy and understand to not let what the other person is, affect the quality of their work and the quality of their character. Or the way you respect them. You should be able to do the job and do whatever is required.”

“And understand if anybody said this if that person is coming from a [malicious] place that’s not healthy,” he remarked. “And it just happened to be that it was towards me. It could have been towards Fraser [Olender]. It could have been towards Jake [Foulger]. It could have been towards Rachel [Hargrove]. It could have been towards Captain Lee [Rosbach].

He added, “Like all of that, they fall into that category. Lee is 70-something. Rachel is a female chef. Sexual preference … Fraser is one of the best dudes that I’ve seen and been able to work for. He’s such a good worker if as long as none of that gets in the way of what the goal is. We can all get along very well.”

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