My true story... but its funny (Warning LONG) [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Sharker
12-13-2006, 09:29
I am hesitant to tell this... as the person involved may kill me if they knew about it.
2 or 3 years ago, I was at the South end of Amelia (its an island above Jacksonville Florida) fishing the fall run of Seatrout. As is always the way at the point, there were numerous people there. The bite had been hot, and it was about 2 hours before dead low.
While I was fishing, I noticed a little skiff, probably 12-16 foot anchored up ahead of the breakers. I was bored waiting on bites, so I just started watching this guy... he seemed to be having engine trouble, as he was stooping over the kicker. (Now you must realize that he is about 500-600 yards away from me). As I am watching him, I notice he is dragging anchor and getting close to the breakers. (If you have never seen the breakers, they can get huge... this day they were 4-6 feet (They are formed by the 30-50 foot deep river's current colliding with the still ocean over a shallow 3-6 feet of sand and thus large breakers are formed).
I pointed this out to a couple fishing beside me, and they are observing the same thing. Finally 10 minutes have passed, and I see the boat enter the breakers... up and down the boats heaving... the guys still bent over the motor. The couple and i are concerned, and they recommend me calling the Coast Guard. I am hestitant, but it does look bad. I get out my cell and make the call... I tell them what I am observing, and say "I dont know if this is serious or not, but heres the situation.."
Well the guy starts getting info from me, and gets my number and says he will call me right back (He wanted to stay on the line with me but my cell phone was beginning to die). So we (me and the couple) start talking... I am trying to ease my conerns that this is all a miss-understanding of the situation.

About 20 minutes pass and I get a call back from the Coasties... they ask how the guy is doing... I say hes still getting tossed around by the breakers... The coastie then asks if I can see a Navy bird? Well near Mayport (a Navy base at Jacksonville, and the next river south... probably 5 miles away) you always see SeaHawks so I tell him the only one I see is about 3-4 miles offshore heading North... this gets an "idiots" reponse from the Coastie. He then tells me he has a Coast Guard bird coming in from Savanah (about 100 miles North) and some Zodiaks coming from Mayport... I start to get that horrible feeling that this cant turn out good. He hangs up so my phone doesnt die.

Another 15-20 minutes pass... long minutes, with me watching this boat... the guys going forward and aft every minute or two... hes way inside the breakers now... I am thinking that he is def. in trouble. I get another call... the Coastie wants to know if I can see their Bird... I get look around and no dice. My phone is beeping that its about to die, all the fishermen on the beach are worked into a frenzy over this poor guy whos about to drown... calling me a HERO!

Finally we see the Helo coming in over the river and it flys over the beach, right over us... we are all pointing (like this would do any good)... and the helo flys right past the boat and heads offshore... I tell the guy on the phone that they missed the boat. So he relays this to the helo... 30 seconds later the helo turns and comes back around and does a search grid, again passing the boat (I am on the phone with dispatch and I can hear him talking and the helo talking back... there is about a 30 second delay). I again tell the dispatcher that the helo missed the boat...

So after a delay, the dispatcher says that the only boat they can see is a guy who is fishing... they then say they are gonna hover over the boat to ensure we are talking about the same boat.

The Helo then goes right over the boat and starts hovering... by right over the boat, I mean less than 30 feet above it.... water is flying everywhere... you can hardly make out the boat in all the mist. I tell the dispatcher that "Yes thats the boat." After 30 seconds of continual hovering the dispatcher says... the guy is only fishing! BAM!!! I feel like I am going to throw up... I have no idea how much Jet fuel costs, but I am sure I am about to get a bill and find out... Everywhere in the world, my face and phone number are being broadcast as a waster of American Assets.
The Helo leaves... I can only imagine that the poor fisherman has had a heart attack... Surely it cant get any worse!!! Right.....

WRONG!
The Navy bird has apparently been looking all this time as well for the boat, and they come about 5 minutes later and "suddenly spot" the boat... Well I never knew it, but a Navy SeaHawk is ALOT bigger than a Coast Guard Helo... and apparently Navy pilots are better pilots, cuz they were able to put the helo about 10 feet over the boat. This time you couldnt see anything. The boat, helo... all of it was impossible to see through the mist. This helo was even blowing the breakers flat.

About this time, 2 Zodiaks come roaring by (they are the orange ones with gray T tops...) loaded with Coasties.... they run full throttle into the fray...
I cant pack my stuff up quick enough. From Hero to Zero in about 1 second... I swear... who ever was in that boat has got to tell this story. I am sure they gave up fishing after all this happened to them. If they read this.... I promise, I thought you were in Peril.... but dont worry, I will never call the coasties again!!!

This story is unfortunately 100% true! Never did get the fuel bill!