Libbie the Lobster

To purchase the children's book "Saving Libbie the Lobster" go to

Coincidence? Fate? Chance? Part I


Could every event that occurred in just one short week have been by coincidence, an act of fate, just pure luck or something else? I will let you be the judge.

The events unfolded thus:

One recent Sunday, I decided to stop at Publix for some quick food shopping on my way home from the gym and just happened upon a friend who told me that there was a very rare lobster in the lobster tank in the seafood department. I went to see for myself despite the fact that being vegan I don’t like to see live lobsters in a tank to be sold as food. The seafood department manager just happened to be standing there and told me that14903_851434018200920_2174728373357695018_n he had researched about “her” (he said she was female) and she is one in 30 million rare. I took a picture of her and posted it on Facebook asking if anyone knew where I might find her a home.

Heather Chalmers (who I had only met twice before) just happened to be on Facebook at the time and responded that she would like to help. She went directly to Publix and discussed details of the rare golden-yellow lobster I had seen with the seafood department manager. (And by the way, Heather and I just happen to both be writers.)

Amazingly by the next day, Heather and I had spoken several times and had begun to put a plan together to rescue the beautiful yellow lobster from becoming someone’s dinner and to get her to a cold water tank, which we had learned she needed to survive.

While Heather prepared a fish tank, she just happened to have, and filled it with ocean water from our awesome Flagler Beach, I kept up with our many friends on Facebook who responded with suggestions of who may be willing to take her. I emailed, called, and messaged at least 30 facilities in the State of Florida, including SeaWorld, MarineLand, and The Florida Aquarium. Although people were very kind and wanted to help, no place in Florida had cold water tanks.

Heather it turned out  just happened to be the perfectly right person for the job of helping me liberate the rare lobster. Her love of all living things is equal to mine and her ability to do what ever it takes bolstered my own. Without saying it to each other, we both seemed to be saying the same thing, “We can do this!”

And in the meantime (and we’re only 2 full days into this), A friend contacted The Palm Coast Observer (our local newspaper) who wanted to do the story. I had contacted ABC News 13 in Orlando thinking that news about this would help me find a home for our now named lobster, Libbie (short for liberation). “The human interest” story as the press called it, went viral after Heather, her daughter, Ava and I were filmed and interviewed with Libbie for TV.

A friend, Nadine King, of Christmas Come True , who lives in my town of Flagler Beach, just happened to be in Maine at that time. She just happened to know a man named Mark Murrell, owner of and sent me his email address thinking he may be of some assistance. I emailed him and he was eager to help. And by the way, the busy man he is, just happened to receive my email right away and responded with an immediate phone call.

Day three, Heather and I bought Libbie from Publix OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAand placed her in the fish tank in Heather’s kitchen surrounded with bags of ice and frozen water bottles inside to keep the seawater cold, a temperature gauge, water filter, aerator, and plenty of scallops for her to eat.

Soon I was spending every waking moment answering email requests from news stations, including CNN, Huffington Post, and ABC News, New York to use our pictures of Libbie in their articles, and contacting science centers and aquariums outside the state for a home for Libbie.

Heather diligently cared for Libbie in her kitchen meanwhile, checking the temperature, water level and Libbie’s overall condition, as well as making several trips to the store for more ice and to the ocean for more seawater.

As if things weren’t happening fast at that point, they began to move at jet speed. I found The Seacoast Science Center in Rye, New Hampshire, whose Aquarist, Rob Royer just “happened” to receive my email and responded that he would love to have her. I gave Mark Murrell, Nadine King and Rob Royer each other’s contact information. Mark sent me instructions on how tho pack Libbie for shipping, where to take her and provided the tracking label for her overnight flight to New Hampshire.

All the pieces were fitting together and everyone just happened to be in the right place at the right time to make it happen quickly. If Heather and I had even a moment to stop to see it all, we would have been amazed by the unmistakable synchronicity of it all.

Oh and there is more to this incredible story, much more! See what happens next!

What do you think so far? Is it coincidence, fate, chance, or something else?



Author: Libbie The Lobster

I am a writer and a co-author of the children's book, Saving Libbie the Lobster, with Heather Chalmers. Our story is based on the true adventure of how we rescued a rare yellow lobster from our local supermarket.

6 thoughts on “Coincidence? Fate? Chance? Part I

  1. I have never been one to think that the events in our lives, our world are willy-nilly happenings. All life is interconnected and moving within a Master Plan. If we allow ourselves a level of awareness so as not to miss opportunities to help, respond and act within this Plan, then “Libbie” moments materialize! Kudos to you Marybeth and Heather for “seeing,truly seeing” and then taking action with resolve and compassion!!


  2. It’s certainly not a coincidence…I just don’t believe they exist. But like Jayme, I believe if we are all aware, moments like this are put before us and it all works out JUST the way it’s “supposed” to…I’m happy I’ve been able to witness all these wonderful moments. I told the entire story to a friend the other day and she was brought to tears. (and got chill bumps thinking about it!) Libbie has already brought lots of joy to many and she’s just getting started!


    • Thank you Paige and I couldn’t agree more. Joyous things have come to many of us as the direct result of me finding Libbie that day. So many wonderful things for so many and too much to write here. I guess that’s a whole other blog. Thank you my friend.


  3. Was it hard for you to even look at the lobster tank? I turn my head away when I pass one.


    • Lol! Being vegan, I don’t even walk close to that section Ellen. The meat and seafood departments are sad to me. I would never have seen Libbie if a friend I ran into in one of the aisles hadn’t told me about her. I call that kind of thing a non-coincidence.


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