MarineMax treats Marine to day of offshore fishing

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Joe Svedi (left), a MarineMax customer, Kevin Graffagnino, captain of the MarineMax Fishing Team, MarineMax customer Jim McAleavey and Marine Sgt. Adam Keeton are shown with a 98-pound tuna they caught June 8 in the Hudson Canyon.

Joe Svedi (left), a MarineMax customer, Kevin Graffagnino, captain of the MarineMax Fishing Team, MarineMax customer Jim McAleavey and Marine Sgt. Adam Keeton are shown with a 98-pound tuna they caught June 8 in the Hudson Canyon.

Earlier this month, the fishing team at MarineMax Lindenhurst (N.J.) trekked 100 miles offshore to Hudson Canyon to give Marine Sgt. Adam Keeton a special day of fishing.

“I had some previous experience fishing offshore in California, but nothing like this. It was the best day of fishing I could have ever dreamed of,” Keeton said in a statement. “It was amazing. We landed three of the four bluefin tuna which we released and seven of the nine yellowfin, one weighing almost 100 pounds. What a great time with some really great people.”

Joe Svedi, a MarineMax customer, had asked the fishing team’s captain, Kevin Graffagnino, whether MarineMax could do something special for Keeton, a friend who has served two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.

Graffagnino approached MarineMax regional president Matthew Barbara and store general manager Joseph Clup with the request. Together they agreed to provide a special offshore experience on the MarineMax Fishing Team’s boat, a Sailfish 320 CC, to thank Keeton for his service and in turn honor everyone who serves in the armed forces.

Along on the ride June 8 was Jim McAleavey, another MarineMax customer. The pickup crew worked well together, and with Graffagnino’s knowledge and experience he was able to put the crew on the fish on a cool and sunny day over the Hudson Canyon. An extension of the Hudson River Valley, the canyon runs from New York/New Jersey Harbor as much as 400 nautical miles out to sea. It is the largest known submarine canyon off the East Coast and one of the largest in the world. The canyon is a natural haven for baitfish, which naturally attract pelagic predators.

“It was such a rewarding day of fishing, and I am so grateful for this opportunity to meet and get to know Adam,” Graffagnino said. “The men and women of the armed services sacrifice so much to protect us. It was a true blessing to have the opportunity to give a little back.”

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