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BoatUS hands out lifesaving awards at annual conference

Representing TowBoatUS Friday Harbor, which won Tower of the Year honors, are Capt. Deb Fritz (second from right) and Capt. Andrew DiRienzo (second from left). Others shown are TowBoatUS vice president Adam Wheeler (left); BoatUS chairman and CEO Kirk La (middle); and BoatUS vice president Jerry Cardarelli (right).

Representing TowBoatUS Friday Harbor, which won Tower of the Year honors, are Capt. Deb Fritz (second from right) and Capt. Andrew DiRienzo (second from left). Others shown are TowBoatUS vice president Adam Wheeler (left); BoatUS chairman and CEO Kirk La (middle); and BoatUS vice president Jerry Cardarelli (right).

TowBoatUS Friday Harbor in Washington state was named Tower of the Year and boat-towing captains from four states were honored for lifesaving acts at the annual conference of BoatUS Towing Services last Thursday in Jupiter, Fla.

BoatUS said the franchise, owned by Capt. Deb Fritz, was acknowledged for its near-perfect 24-hour towing dispatch operation, superior customer service and satisfaction, towing case management and its work in the local boating community.

The company has four response vessels that range from 23 to 25 feet. BoatUS said they are a familiar sight to San Juan Island boaters.

Separately, 10 TowBoatUS captains who acted as good Samaritans to save lives last year also were honored at the conference. They serve towing locations in Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts and California.

Capts. Kyle Potts, Andres Rosado, Jerry Acosta and Shane Earhart of TowBoatUS Charlotte Harbor, Fla., received the Woody Pollack Lifesaving Award.

Capt. Kyle Potts (second from left) of TowBoatUS Charlotte Harbor, Fla., is one of four Woody Pollack Lifesaving Award winners. He is shown with BoatUS Chairman and CEO Kirk La (left); and Capt. Christina M. Davidson, Coast Guard Office of Search and Rescue.

Capt. Kyle Potts (second from left) of TowBoatUS Charlotte Harbor, Fla., is one of four Woody Pollack Lifesaving Award winners. He is shown with BoatUS Chairman and CEO Kirk La (left); and Capt. Christina M. Davidson, Coast Guard Office of Search and Rescue.

Meritorious Service awards went to Capts. Dale and Austin Plummer of TowBoatUS Baltimore; Capt. Nathan Lins, TowBoatUS Catalina, Calif.; Capt. Sawyer Smith, TowBoatUS Newburyport, Mass.; Capt. William “Pat” Davis, TowBoatUS Stuart, Fla.; and Capt. James Freeman, TowBoatUS Tarpon Springs, Fla.

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