Ten TowBoatUS captains were honored by their peers for lifesaving actions at the annual BoatUS Towing Conference last week in San Diego.
The captains serve TowBoatUS locations in Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island and North Carolina. The awards were given at the Feb.14-16 conference for actions they took last year.
Capt. Cole Sisler, of TowBoatUS Fort Lauderdale, won the Woody Pollack Lifesaving Award for rescuing a swimmer who was in distress and being swept out to sea. Sisler also received a lifesaving award from the Broward County Sheriff's Department for his actions.
Meritorious Service Awards were given to:
Capt. Eric Laury and Capt. Steven Reuss, TowBoatUS Fort Lauderdale: rescued four overturned kayakers who were pre-fishing a local tournament and caught in a thunderstorm with 50-plus mph winds, later described as “armageddon.”
Capt. Che’ Ruble, TowBoatUS Tarpon Springs, Fla.: rescued a 62-year-old man in the water who was being swept out to sea without a life jacket.
Capt. Dallas Curry, TowBoatUS Tarpon Springs, Fla.: rescued a woman who had fallen from a high-speed powerboat unnoticed by anyone aboard and was slowly drifting out to sea.
Capt. Clint Allen, TowBoatUS New Bedford, Mass.: rescued six crewmen from the 72-foot commercial scallop fishing vessel Captain Jeff after it began taking on water five miles south of New Bedford Harbor.
Capt. Dan Carpenter, TowBoatUS Falmouth, Mass.: rescued five people aboard a 24-foot powerboat that sank after striking rocks off Osterville, Mass.
Capt. John Altamura, TowBoatUS Manasquan, N.J.: rescued two people when a 21-foot boat with 11 passengers was swamped in the narrow, swift-moving Point Pleasant Canal. New Jersey state troopers rescued the other nine people and a dog.
Capt. Robert DiSanto, TowBoatUS Narragansett Bay, R.I.: rescued a swimmer who was being swept out to sea off Block Island’s dangerous North Rip.
Capt. Brian Lischin, TowBoatUS. Jordan Lake, N.C.: located a lost boat on the 14,000-acre lake with 13 people aboard and provided emergency transportation to a person who was having a stroke.