The former Plymouth
schoolboy and SAS sergeant was hailed as a hero by crewmates for twice
diving under the water to retrieve a liferaft and emergency equipment.
He is due is to be reunited with his family in the city tomorrow.
Mum Florence said she was not surprised by her son's brave actions. He
previously set the record for the first solo crossing of the North
Atlantic in a 27-foot kayak, paddling across 2,000 miles of open ocean in
She said: "My younger son rang me at 3.45am to tell me what had happened.
"I felt dreadful and I was really worried until they had all been picked
Mrs Bray, who is widowed, added: "He's always been adventurous and, while
I feel the sea may claim him one day, I have never pressured him to stop.
This is the life he likes.
"His first time in a canoe was at the age of 13. I missed him one day, and
when he came in he'd canoed from Camels Head to Cawsand.
"He's got to have a challenge and this setback won't stop him. He's going
to tackle the Pacific next."
The 48-year-old ex-SAS diver is a reluctant hero, insisting: "I had a job
to do and I got on with it."
Pete, who attended Ford and Trelawney schools, was one of a four-strong
British team of rowers attempting to set a new trans-Atlantic record.
The four had been at sea for 39 days and were on course to shatter the
55-day record by 10 days when a 60ft wave hit their craft, 300 miles west
of the Isles of Scilly.
They were picked up by a Danish tanker and brought ashore at Foynes, on
the west coast of Ireland, before flying to Southampton Airport.
Pete was met at the airport yesterday by his girlfriend Maria Newton and
his brother Clinton, who had travelled from Plymstock with his wife and
Pete said: "We desperately needed the liferaft, but my half of the boat
"I dived back into the boat to get the liferaft, and then I dived in again
to get the grab bag.
"The thought that we might die never entered my mind - we had all the
safety equipment, we were well drilled and the adrenaline just took over."
After retrieving the crew's liferaft and grab bag, Pete told jokes to keep
the crew awake and in good spirits while they awaited rescue.
Pete added: "We're a Cornish family and I've got a lot of friends in
"During my schooldays I was known as David. It was only when I joined the
military that I used my real name."
Clinton, 38, a former Army bandmaster, learned of his brother's plight in
a phone call in the early hours on Sunday.
He said: "His crewmates are hailing him as a hero, but he's always been a
hero to me.
"Hearing how he dived into the water to get the liferaft, it wasn't a
shock - that's Pete."